Oh No - Good Vibes/Bad VibesWritten by Chi Chi Thalken on May 12, 2023
Oh No is a producer from Oxnard, California who has been releasing music for over twenty years, giving us all sorts of different projects in the process, working with artists like Prince Po, Percee P, Declaime, LMNO, and Moka Only along the way. Back in February of this year, Oh No gave us a sneak peak at his new project with Good Vibes. Now he’s back to give us the full picture of his breakdown and reconstruction of Roy Ayers’ catalogue with Good Vibes/Bad Vibes.
Roy Ayers’ catalogue is one that is vast and wide-ranging, one where a producer could easily get lost trying to figure out what to use and how. To that end, Oh No settled on separating Ayers’ music into vibes, and in the process ended up creating a sort of yin yang album, where Side A is all sunshine and good vibes, and Side B is the bad vibes, where things might get a little ugly, a little angry, or a little sad. Whatever vibe you’re dealing with, though, you can be sure that Oh No is not just taking simple riff samples and putting them over a standard boom bap beat. No, Oh No holds himself to a higher standard than that, and this is a wildly inventive project that really pushes the boundaries of both jazz and hip hop. It’s one where it’s best to just strap yourself in, press play, and then enjoy the ride and see how much you can catch each time through. It could be a really clever rhythm switch, it could be a creative layering of different elements, or it could be some really thought-provoking vocal samples. Whatever it is, you can be sure that Oh No is deploying the music in a very thoughtful manner to tell this really complex emotional story over the course of eighteen tracks. It’s challenging, to be sure, but it’s also just inviting enough that you’re going to be intrigued enough from the opening to go on this journey with Oh No, and you’ll be rewarded time and again for doing so.
Good Vibes/Bad Vibes might seem straightforward enough on paper, but it’s only the tip of the iceberg with Oh No. Yes, this is an instrumental hip hop album built off of Roy Ayers samples, but Oh No takes the whole project to another level with his care and creativity, transforming everything into something that is entirely his own.
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