Slow Motion Soundz

Slow Motion Soundz are not so much a music group or label as much as a communal mouthpiece for Huntsville, Ala. Consisting of various artists and groups, namely G-Side, the duo of ST 2 Lettaz and Yung Clova, and the Block Beataz production team, Slow Motion Soundz can be viewed as one collective effort [alongside neighboring internet sensations Paper Route Gangstaz (PRGz)] to raise the stature of both the group's hometown and native state. UK Southern rap blog Southern Hospitality, a site that has collaborated extensively (along with the Baller's Eve show on East Village Radio) with the collective in promoting their works and efforts, framed the group in terms of other popular regional, Southern hip-hop: "You’ve probably not felt like this since living through the Organized Noize-soundtracked era via Atlanta, Georgia or submitting to the Triple Six Mafia-monopolised, Mephistophelean movement from Memphis, Tennessee all the way up to Hollyhood and beyond."

What has distinguished Slow Motion Soundz is its contemporary embrace of community building. "We are a cultured people at Slow Motion Soundz. We look outside of regional boundaries when it comes to aspirations and influence," says Slow Motion Soundz "point guard"/manager Codie G. This international perspective has led the collective on an international and purely digital path. Members of the group have toured primarily regionally and internationally (Scandinavia), while releasing albums and mixtapes via the internet. In 2009 and 2010 Slow Motion Soundz attracted considerable mainstream media attention, particularly favorable reviews of G-Side's Huntsville International album, Jon Caramanica's New York Times assessment that 2009 was the year "hip-hop belonged to Huntsville, Ala." and Pitchfork's laudatory reporting of G-Side's breakthrough performance at the NPR (yes, that NPR) showcase at SXSW 2010.

Though Slow Motion Soundz includes numerous members and affiliates, such as 6 Tre Gangsta, Nate B, Kristmas, Jackie Chain, Bentley and G-Mane, the one common aesthetic has been a toned down approach to popular rap tropes. In other words, the gun clapping and drug talk are subtly not-as-present. True, lifestyle reports and class elevation remain the topics du jour, but there is a relatively optimistic subtext. Or, this is about as close to optimism as you can get in rap in the early 21st century.

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