“Seattle hip-hop is having a moment right now, and Crane City Music is at the center.” — NPR

Browse or search our archive of 284 Seattle hip-hop record reviews




Released August 2017

Black-N-Gold is a subversive seven-song EP from Seattle artist CarLarans. He’s the full package: An intimidatingly talented singer, rapper, dancer, piano player, songwriter, and entertainer. In October, he commandingly claimed top prize in the four-week Discovered hip-hop performance contest, judged by Silas Blak, Georgio Brown and yours truly. In November, he created and launched The Beat, a weekly online interview and variety show featuring up-and-comers in Seattle’s superb queer music scene. And yeah, this 22-minute H-bomb is one polished, hella confident and damn fine record. Opening track “Black Xcellence” begins with a quiet swagger, a sweet seduction, and softly becomes a menacing race war manifesto: “Better grab your lawyers because we’re coming for you.” I want to hear the epic strut and floor-thumping bass of “Do Tha Walk,” on a crazy loud club stereo. That night, the DJ will end up playing the whole record and we’ll all sing along to the refrain, “Don’t fuck with me, no, no, no” while dancing our best tropical salsa during “Don’t Come For Me.” What I’ve learned in the last six months is that CarLarans is an unstoppable force.

Videos from this record

Find more from