Solo hip-hop artist and one-third of the hip-hop supergroup The Sorority, Lex Leosis makes some activity on her discography with the release of her EP — Terracotta. The EP follows the release of a few consecutive singles and her debut full-length album Mythologies in 2020. In a way, Terracotta borrows all the momentum raised with Mythologies and returns with a collective work of six fresh tracks with none of the clique and attitude lost from Leosis’ musical persona. The EP features six tracks with a comfortable runtime of seventeen minutes, across which the listener is made familiar with Leosis’ customary feminine swagger and assertive flows on the beats.
The EP opens up with Khrys (Intro) — featuring vinyl crackles, offering the sense of vintage retrospection with a contemplative vocal melody running across it. Khrys (Intro) is almost rhythm and blues with a hint of soul music, replete with the accompaniment of the piano and the inward-looking lyricism. The track offers a feeling of loosening up and unwinding following daily bustle, inviting space of placid contemplation. The invitation to getting on the Lex Leosis hype-bus is ushered in with Won’t Wait — a stick-it-to-you self-assured track where Leosis delivers an imperturbable flow across a simple, yet ridiculously effective kick-snare combination. Leosis’ cyphers represent a sense of self-belief and unfazed confidence in collaboration with a supremely attractive and contagious swagger to raise the eyebrows of some of the best in the business. The track also features synth waves and saxophones, giving it the contemporary jazz-rap clique.
For an artist to pull off a track like Wanted requires a very detailed understanding and assessment of the very foundational hip-hop characteristics of the 90s, introduced by groups such as Mobb Deep or N.W.A. Not only does Leosis smash that qualification, but she also offers a polished take by developing on those styles. Wanted features all the quintessential hip-hop elements celebrated timelessly, including the disc scratching, the classic four-by-four percussive combination and the vocoded vocal effects. Lyricism such as — ‘Tell your friends that I’m coming to your city / Pretty bitty, bit me up she don’t welcome in committee’ — remind us of the classic hostile camaraderie between hip-hop groups in the East and West coasts of America, which developed the sense of belonging to a particular hip-hop clique to ride and die for.
That Feel is a brilliantly produced track that continues this vintage conversation and alludes to the same styles, featuring in parts rhythm and blues waves that wash across the track to develop the aesthetics of the genre. Featuring a beat switch in the outro of the track, the lyricism appears understandably more personal and confident, highlighting the rapper’s hardships in her immediate society. Reality is a moodier and groovier track, opening up with an acoustic riff that quickly gets married to a catchy reggateton-like lyricism. Arguably the EP’s romantic cypher, Hold Yah Down features narrative lyricism with a rhythm and bluesy drum-n-bass backbone and hints of funkadelia instrumentation.