Toronto artists Eyeda Sophia & emperor bohe team up for The Esplanade
Toronto artist Eyeda Sophia has dropped a new album titled The Esplanade, produced in full by Toronto beatmaker and fellow artist, emperor bohe. Both Sophia and Bohe are currently residing in the Toronto area and linked up over the COVID-19 quarantine to create this new 11-track project. It features numerous guest artists including Empara, T-Bai, Realije, Lincoln Woods, Quezal, Vagabond Maurice and James Bailey.
The Esplanade is a reference to the Downtown Toronto street which is home to the studio where the album was recorded. It also happens to be the location of emperor bohe’s residence as well.
The new record is a perfect throwback to the 1990’s with a modern day spin, both with its lyrical style and also its production. With tracks like “Supercalifragilisp” and “Brady Bunch,” the album would have no problem fitting in if it were released back in ’94 instead. Another enjoyable track I found on this album was “Toxic Love,” which has a smooth R&B vibe to it which keeps the flow of the tracks fresh with a slightly different dynamic.
With the new project, Eyeda Sophia continues to prove why she is one of the best young Canadian female emcees on the come up who is just getting started. The Esplanade is Eyeda’s fourth project since the start of 2019, and follows The Red Project available here.
Sophia’s lyricism is also matched by her visual style which is equally as unique as her music. She’s frequently seen in her promotional photos wearing gold Indian style jewelry and other bright reflective pieces. She occasionally includes her friend and model Rajasi for certain compositions which provides her photographic work with a distinct level of artistic expression and style.
We spoke briefly to Eyeda Sophia and emperor bohe while writing this review and they both offered some commentary on how The Esplanade came together.
“When I was making the beats for this album, I just wanted to make tracks without forcing a specific sound,” bohe explained.
“The album was made during the peak of the Stage 1 COVID lockdown and I was with Eyeda the entire time, so we organically made the album together. I would just make beats that sounded good to me while Eyeda was in the room… if she was bobbing her head and writing while I was making the beat, then I knew we had a track on our hands.”
Eyeda touched on the album’s subject matter, and the inspiration behind its creation:
“The Esplanade is a collage of experiences and stories, emperor bohe and I recorded everything in his home studio during the quarantine,” Eyeda said.
“It gave us time to really create something whole. I touch on topics like family life, self-improvement and fate. His beats and my rap just meshed stylistically and the result of our summer inside was The Esplanade.”
Written by Kyle McNeil for HipHopCanada
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