Che Noir is an artist from Buffalo who only started releasing music four years ago, but she hit the ground running and had a breakthrough moment in 2020 when she teamed up with Apollo Brown to release …As God Intended on Mello Music Group. She didn’t rest on her laurels, though, with 2022 shaping up to be one of her busiest years to date. In January, she dropped a full-length album, Food For Thought, and then turned around and released an EP, Careful What You Wish For. Now she is back with another album, The Last Remnants.

Just to show you how steady in quality Che Noir has been, the songs for The Last Remnants were actually recorded back in 2020, along with a few coming from the Food For Thought sessions. Now, a lot of the time when an artist releases a collection like this, you can usually tell just by the quality of the material. There might be one or two standout songs, but the rest will kind of fade to the middle, and you’ll understand why they didn’t make the cut for previous albums. In the case of The Last Remnants, everything sounds just as solid and consistent with what she’s been doing over the last four years, you probably wouldn’t know unless you were told. It sounds like everything was written and recorded for this album. On this project, we’re getting production from 38 Spesh, Fruition, LT Beats, Trox, Streezy, and Tricky Tripps. All of the beats line up, though, because Noir has such a clear vision of what type of hip hop she wants to make and what kind of production fits her flow. That style lands somewhere between New York and Detroit, as Noir favors these deliberately paced soul-sampling boom bap tracks, where she can hop on the mic and spit at you with her clear and direct flow. It’s not anything out of the ordinary, except that Noir is so strong and focused with her lyricism, cutting through the noise and vividly painting a picture of what her life is like as she carves out a space for herself in the music industry and tries to build community in Buffalo. As a result, it’s the type of music where you can easily form a personal bond with, because Noir is putting so much of herself into her lyrics.

The Last Remnants isn’t anything out of the ordinary for Noir, but the good news is that “ordinary” for Noir is actually a high bar to reach. With what are technically the scraps from previous projects, she’s giving you a hip hop album that is better than most artists’ “A” material.