Theophilus London - Rio
What rapper other than Theophilus London can pull this song off? The Menahan Street Band lays down a '70s soul vibe that is filled with plenty of bossa nova influences. The instrumental is so smooth, and Theophilus just croons over the track. "Rio" really shows the rapper branching out into new territory. Sure, this isn't the first time he's strayed away from rhyming over a beat, but this is definitely the first major showcase of his range since being in the public eye. Anyone remember "Calypso Blues"? There's still plenty of references to hip-hop, but there's so much more artistry put into this one. Look out for the official release of "Rio" on April 16th. Until then, stream below.