J The Exodus: 360 – Full Circle | Mixtape Review & Free DL



Amidst all the hype and fanfare of G.O.O.D Friday leaks and rappers being released from prison, it’s always refreshing to step away from the US rap circus and enter the subterranean effervescence of UK Hip Hop. One name which has begun to surface from the pack is Midas Touch, a inseparable lyrical trio composed of AKS, Phoenix Da Icefire and J The Exodus. Following his musical teammates’ debut mixtapes (AKS’ A Miracle in the Making and Phoenix’s  Baptism Under Fire), J The Exodus hopes to make it a hat trick of successful releases and elevate the profile of a group with the potential to tear into the iron circle of the UK’s elite.

An impressive array of beat choices definitely adds weight to the dominant tones of J The Ex. His 360 Full Circle isn’t a collection of quick/lazy freestyles but well crafted reworkings of some familiar and slept-on Hip Hop cuts. Taking “There’s So Much More” as an example, Ex’s benevolent cry of educating ones self is constructed with more than just familiar names from black history but with passion and skill and with Scarface’s “Guess Who’s Back” instrumental as backing, it results in a pleasing effort.

Much like his fellow Midas Touch brethrens, J’s raps are empowering verses, steering away from superficial objectifications to focus on of staying true amidst a society of false personas. “Be” featuring Karis Taylor is a soulful highlight from the mixtape, riding the sounds of Reflection Eternal’s “2000 Seasons”.

What impresses overall is that, bar two or three tracks, J’s lyrical performances remain consistent; his militia like delivery keeps the listener focused and encourages one to scrutinise his every line, which is refreshing when compared to the mediocrity flooding today’s scene.

Not to take anything away from the solo emcee, but arguably the standout track on 360 Full Circle is when all three members of the Midas collective come together to recreate ’90s Black Star classic “Respiration”. Each emcee shines uniquely, displaying the talents which they each bring; AKS’ exceptional word construction; J’s imposing delivery and Phoenix’s flow.

Providing more than the quick fix which many mixtapes offer, 360 Full Circle offers meaty, in-depth lyricism which requires more than the solo listen to take on the full impact. Although his reworking of two of Nas’ previous could be excused, J is triumphant as a commanding emcee throughout the rest of the 16-track compilation.

Feeling at home amongst soul stirring compositions, J The Exodus laments over education, religion and identity with vigour which the likes of Akala and Klashnekoff would [probably] admire. Rounding off a trilogy of great works from the Midas Touch connection, it’s now a matter of taking their potential to the next plateau within UK Hip Hop.

360 – Full Circle can be downloaded from jtheexodus.bandcamp.com.

J The Exodus online: Twitter x Bandcamp x Soundcloud x MySpace