Seven years since its release, we revisit Martin $ky’s quintessential EP.
When the eye was on Chicago due to Drill wave & alternative groups like SAVEMONEY, the rest of the underground scene was having its own renaissance. This is where artists like Martin $ky became sleeper hits. Mostly known for his production work, his own EP saw him diving into his rapping abilities. Fully self-produced, Martin $ky perfects his sound.
Easily one of the best songs comes from “Reach,” which features PIVOT Gang member Saba. With an iconic video to match, the two flex on the haters proving how they made it in their own city. The two of them feel unstoppable on the track, playing with flows and packing them out with hard hitting lines. Lines here hit nearly as hard as the bass lines, which are groundbreaking throughout the track. So many years later, the track still feels otherworldly.
Intro to the EP “No More Talking” shows off his electronic influence & city influence. Sirens ring throughout the track & are even utilized as a synth, calling to the heavy criminal activity that wrought the city. Electronic synths swirl throughout the track, feeling like they’re taking you down the Chicago rabbit hole, only to be grounded by the heavy hip hop 808s. While his production is a highlight, his bars are never lacking. As the title suggests, he shuts down critics by talking about how the youth run the city & how he’ll continue to grind no matter what.
His track “Stay Up 2015” sees co-production from Chief Keef cohort Young Chop. Their production together makes for an beautifully layered banger, with thick sliding 808s & hard-hitting snares. Martin $ky talks about his work ethic, and how this wasn’t anywhere near an overnight process. He goes into how far ahead of his peers he is, and by the quality of the EP that statement is clear.
While many in the Chicago scene got their shine at some point or another, it never seemed to move onto Martin $ky. To this day, this EP feels like none other. His qualities as a producer are just as inventive as the best around, and his flows are as tight as any of his contemporaries (See “Plug”). In such a firey year for Chicago, some stuff was bound to fly under the radar. Thankfully, Martin $ky decided to bless the world no matter what.