Breaking down Brevner EP
Vancouver, BC – Since the release of his impressively rotated BREVNER EP in late February, Matt Brevner has seen a whole new level of attention in his direction. He’s been on the mouths, speakers and screens of many for the past few months, proving that he has the weight to make a name for himself outside of engaging in Canadian rap beef antics.
We let the album sit for over a month to take it in and for those who still haven’t jumped on board, we got a breakdown prepared of all 8-tracks that make up the BREVNER EP. Riding on the same vibes as the Vancouver-based artist – who frequently shows love to his Vancity scene – we took to some of the cities premium industry heads to grab quotes on their thoughts of the EP alongside our own own opinions.
Purchase the BREVNER EP here and check out our breakdown below.
The compelling piano arrangement of “Chico” intros with Withinroots and Stevie Ross assisting on a goose bump worthy chorus. This song is undeniably one of the strongest on the project partly due to the sharp production maintained by N.D.T, Slice, Brevner and JP Floyd. With undisclosed and honest lyrics like “Money on my mind that’s the first thing / early in the morning heat them birds sing / I’ve been grinding all night trying to make it” the rising Vancouver artist takes a turn in opening up his darker side by transitioning the melodic start into a unambiguous ‘hood reality .
“Chico” bridges the gap between Brevner’s past emotionally heart compelling records and his ferocious and undisguised current state. He resolves the question “what’s coming to you” by drawing a classic Scarface quote, “The world Chico, and everything in it” immediately setting the tone of the 8-track project. The theme is an obvious motivation for success and Brevner fails to come in light or quiet. His desires are huge and regardless of the obstacles he parades his determination in taking what’s his.
“It’s nice to hear and see an artist who isn’t trying to conform or chase the elusive music industry dream. Matt Brevner is the voice in Vancouver for what it is now. Sonically lovely, musically thought out and he really puts his heart into these songs. Makes me proud to be from here. Looking and sounding great little brother” Chin Injeti – Grammy Award winning singer/ producer / musician
“BNE” ft. Project Pat
“BNE” is Brev at his most unmerciful and unlawful. The whole track has him painting a dark and explicit lyrical portrait over a menacing beat that’s reinforced by a verse from Memphis heavyweight Project Pat. The first of two tracks featuring Project Pat, he adds another level of straightforward realness that favors with Brevner’s transitioning style. This is a side of Brev that has rarely been showcased but there’s shift here, a relentless temperament that begins with this track and drips throughout the entire project.
“This song is dope. Project Pat and Brevner are a great combination. It’s cool to see some international talent on some new Vancouver shit. Brevner really holds it down here.” Jay Swing – Vancouver DJ / talent buyer (Timbre Concerts)
“Give A F*ck” ft. Rome Fortune
One of my top three on the BREVNER EP, “Give A Fuck” satisfies the craving for an offensive and rebellious chorus. With a hook like “We don’t give a fuck about no motherfuckin’ fuck boy / we don’t give a fuck about no motherfuckin’ bitch” it’s less likely this track will make it’s way to major radio play but it is so easily anthem worthy. Brev contends his composed flow with a shining verse from Rome Fortune that adds another splash of Southern trillness to the EP.
“In my opinion – the standout on the BREVNER EP is Give A F*ck (feat Rome Fortune) and for so many reasons. Not only do I find its production one of the best on the release, this particular track is wickedly hypnotic. I love hearing Brevner get cocky with it and he definitely goes there with this joint, the wit with which Matt delivers his verses are notable for me and the flawless feature by Rome Fortune gets me every time. Killer EP – Killer Track.” Tonye Aganaba – Vancouver soul singer / songwriter
“Came Up” is one of two tracks Brevner takes on his own without the addition of a featured verse and it manages to hit like a fist to the face. An eerie vibe with its hauntingly stringy beat “Came Up” is a precisely cut-throat, cleverly worded joint with more of that Brevner bad boy attitude. “You talk it, we ‘bout it” seems like his way of flexing and challenging at the same time and although the EP holds more than a few impressive features, this track is proof that his solo strength is virtually uncompromised.
“Brevner’s recent EP glistens with uniquely fresh PNW swag. Book beginning with “Chico” and ending with “Last Call”, his musicality is undeniable. The mandolin riff on “Came Up” is sick as he leads listeners down a trippy path into his eclectic world. Big up, Brevner. The Vancouver rap game never sounded so good.” Terry Chen – Film and television actor / Vancouver club owner
“Count.Money.Smoke.Weed” ft. Project Pat, King Louie & Ant-Live
If you want a true and living D-boy rap track, this one has everything. Self explanatory in its title, “Count.Money.Smoke.Weed” holds another verse from Project Pat and also features Chi-town hot boy King Louie and rising Virginia artist Ant-Live. “All we do is count money, smoke weed” – it’s catchy, not overly showy and hits the right notes to increase the heavyweight status of the BREVNER EP.
“I feel like I can really relate to this song because two of my favourite pass times are counting money and smoking weed. Overall I give this particular track two middle fingers up.” – Snak The Ripper – Canadian rapper / label head at Stealth Bomb Records
“All We Know”
The lead single from the EP comes by way of “All We Know” – an airy yet raw number where Brevner takes control over the Slice produced track. The tempo is on the lighter side, expanding the magnitude of the song and although Brevner thickens the charismatic bad boy appeal he manages to make it work in his favor again. Tying in more of that hustler’s vibe he also holds it down by remaining on somewhat relatable territory with lyrics like “Getting money’s all that we know, being broke won’t cut it”. This is another very strong track where Brevner showcases his ability to be tenaciously independent without the need for flashy features.
“Brevner has always been an inspiring artist. We came up together and in many ways he has inspired me to do more creative shit. I love this video, its shot well and I like the song. It’s cool to see him rebrand and create some great new content the city is backing. All love to my friend Brevner. Always.” SonReal – Juno award nominated Canadian hip-hop artist
Jane Doe (A Hoe Like YOU) ft. Riff Raff
“Jane Doe” holds that one super glaring feature but realistically it could go with or without. Riff Raff’s dippy word scrambled lyrics (“great white diamonds, like a great white shark / heart feels like it’s been ate by a shark”) are like the fancy packaging on a gift, where Brevner is free to add the true guts to the track. Whether or not Riff Raff’s intention was to deliver some clever hidden wordplay (sidebar: Katy Perry was rumoured to be dating Riff in 2014. The following year she performed at the Super Bowl with a costume shark and the video went viral), it kind of misses the mark on his part all together.
Brevner delivers a catchy melody about how he shoulda never gave his heart to a hoe, so as a changed man but he “might buy her dinner to go all up in, we ain’t goin’ shoppin” though. When he says his “heart gone cold ‘cause my neck is frozen”, it’s easily understood. Jane Doe must’ve been quite the catch but thankfully for her there can never be too many “peace to my old bae” anthems.
“This track goes. I have actually played this out in the club and it goes. Matt has his hooks on lock and his verse here is dope too. Raps about girls, he seems good at it. Honestly, I don’t check for Riff Raff too often but everything works on this track. Production is on point… shout out to Sonny Parmar and Old Money. I’ve been a fan of Old Money for years now. It seems like a perfect fit for Brev & Konrad working together, they’re both some of most progressive and forward thinking artists our city possesses. Really creative shit. “ Flipout – Vancouver DJ (Virgin Radio)
Closing out the project, “Last Call” carries out the BREVNER EP just as strong as “Chico” lead. A little bit of rap about selling dope, a little bit about the memory of a past love – this one is classic Brevner mixed with an edge more swaggering cockiness. It’s as undeniably relatable as a 2am “You up?” text and with the breezy hook provided by Calgary songstress and frequent collaborator Fembot, this song is a token of two things: 1: When Fembot joins in on a Matt Brevner track, the chemistry is vibrant and magnetizing. 2: Whether you were an observer of Brevner’s come up or you just started here this song is the perfect closer to reminder of his ranging talent, rare vision and of overtly raw charm.
Tags: Ant-Live, Brevner, Chin Injeti, DJ Flipout, Fembot, Jay Swing, JP Floyd, King Louie, Konrad Old Money, N.D.T, Project Pat, Riff Raff, Rome Fortune, Sean Lala, Slice, Snak The Ripper, SonReal, Terry Chen, Tonye Aganaba