One thing that I think is often forgotten is the fact that for the most part, the music industry is a community. I feel like there was a time with so much beef and artists going at each other’s throats that it seemed more of a battlefield than an inclusive group, but I feel like the current landscape of music is one that is accepting, collaborative, and supportive, which is an exciting thing to think about.
While artists from all over the world collaborate with one another, I personally just feel like it hits different when musicians from the same state or city come together on a record, so when Atlanta’s very own J.I.D decided to recruit fellow ATLiens 21 Savage and Baby Tate to join him on his latest single “Surround Sound” in order to prepare fans for his upcoming album The Forever Story, I was beyond pumped. Not only this, but he even got hitmakers like DJ Scheme and Christo to create the instrumental, so it was a track that was set up for success before it even dropped.
In the production, we are blessed with a soulful vocal sample that is bombarded by piercing percussion and thunderous 808s that is a picturesque foundation for J.I.D to go absolutely crazy like only he can. It’s no surprise, but the young Dreamville member is one of the most gifted emcees in the history of Hip-hop, and this is yet another example as to why. As he comes in, he is on the prowl with complex flows that only intensify in difficulty, yet he somehow pulls this off by making it seem like it’s as easy as ever and he could rap this well in his sleep.
21 comes in for the following verse, boasting his assertive and bone-chilling delivery that is a nice change of pace from his rapid-fire spitting counterpart. Finally, Baby Tate rounds things out with a very soulful yet mischievous part that is tuneful and full of personality. Just when I thought things were coming to an end, the beat changes up in order to give J.I.D another chance to prove that no one can even come close to the skills he naturally possesses.
Beyond this, just when I thought it couldn’t get any better, I realized that there was a Mac Grant and Chad Tennies-directed music video for the single that is a perfect accompaniment to the indescribable track as well, making it better than I could’ve ever imagined. “Surround Sound” is a perfect song from the production to the verses to the features and everything in between, and if this record has anything to say about J.I.D’s upcoming album, I think it goes without saying that we’re in for a real treat.