Derived from an Old French word meaning “to sing clearly,” “Chanticleer” has evolved into an metonymic term for “rooster” through its use by Chaucer and others as the name of a famous folkloric character. It’s also the name of Coastal Carolina University’s athletic teams (adopted to match S.C.‘s famous Gamecocks). How does that tie into the theme of Booth newcomer Kokayi‘s latest single? I couldn’t tell you – aside from the fact that the record should serve as a proper wake-up call for those who’ve been sleeping on the Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter/emcee/producer. Here, the DMV repper showcases the full breadth of his skills, cooking up a midtempo, organ-driven backdrop for lyrical meditations on authenticity and originality, delivered in a booming and melodic flow. On the chorus, he shows off his singing voice, enlisting his own children for a little Hard Knock Life-esque backing vocals (along with some well-placed dinosaur noises). Think Koyaki’s found the cure for musical mediocrity? More dope and innovative new material awaits on his Robots & Dinosaurs LP, available now via QN5.
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