Despite the enthusiastic response ZuP received for his Booth debut, December 2012’s Submissive, the Cleveland emcee/producer took his sweet time putting together a follow-up feature. I’ll forgive him, though, because new promo single The Blvd is just that dope. Whereas the first-mentioned joint was a pop record with hip hop-informed production, this joint reverses the formula, pairing flowed bars with surprisingly smooth, tuneful boardwork and hook vocals. Backed by his own wavy keyboard loops and boom-bap percussion, the artist reflects on his relationship with weed and cheap liquor, concluding that a night in the drunk tank might not be such a bad thing (“Bein’ incearcerated is the right place to put me.”). On the back, he showcases his skills behind the wheels of steel, scratching on a line from ODB’s Shimmy Shimmy Ya. Like what you’re hearing? Then stay tuned; The Blvd isn’t attached to a larger set, but we’ll keep you posted on ZuP’s 2014 plans as further details emerge.

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