Joey Aich - King of the Columbus Underground - Brings the Tempo
Evan Dale // April 16, 2019
Regardless of hip-hop’s rise into the mainstream – regardless of hip-hop’s position in pop music – the world and hip-hop music still very much need real rap. Lyricism is a pillar of hip-hop music after all, and those who craft the best stories, who own the best flows, who are most unstoppable with their pen, are some of the most rare and prized artists driving music at every scale. And one of the lyricists that we have come to admire and respect the most is Columbus, Ohio’s Joey Aich.
Prolific would be an understatement when it comes to his canon, so naturally we miss out on covering a lot of his work. In fact, since we discussed his 2018 single, Meccas, he’s put out an EP and a handful of further single releases, the latest of which, Tempo, is an experimental powerhouse lying firmly on the foundation of very real rap. Joey Aich effortlessly tears apart a minimalist beat en route to an energy-building and spirit-lifting chorus before it all falls apart into ambient space where the listener has no choice but to reflect on what came before it.
Sometimes, when we break away from the limelight and the nuances of the mainstream, we find that the source of their inspiration still comes from the underground – from artists like Joey Aich and tracks like Tempo.