Kooley High | Record Review | Indy Week
Pin It

Kooley High 

Summer Sessions EP

In the early '80s, a group called Funky Four Plus One surfaced as one of the first hip-hop groups to include a female emcee surrounded by a group of guys. Nearly three decades later, the same thing happens at N.C. State: This time, they call themselves Kooley High, a crew with three emcees—Tab-One and Charlie Smarts (both of Inflowential) with Rapsody (the "Plus One")—and two producers—Foolery and The Sinopsis. With this debut, Kooley High sounds less like a hip-hop contrivance with a stately objective and more like a few hip-hop fans who decided to get together one night, goof-off and rap to some beats. Thing is, they can actually make good songs.

Summer Sessions has no real direction, but it's not supposed to. On tracks like "We Be That," "Back Home" and "I Wanna," Kooley High's production team decorates the song with utility snares, stringing together the emcees' sportive anecdotes about life, love and fun, hardly acknowledging that such a thing barely exists in today's pissing-contest hip hop. The meanest moment of the EP lands when 9th Wonder produces "Water" and brings along fellow Justus League member Edgar Allen Floe (pun intended?). Rapsody and Charlie Smarts are at their finest here, capturing the devilish nature of 9th's drums with their words and ultimately matching a behemoth final verse by E.A. Floe.

Kooley High isn't groundbreaking here, but it is a relief to hear a hip-hop group that doesn't take themselves so damn seriously, and, ultimately, this EP could better serve as a springboard for its members' solo efforts. But until that graduation, Kooley High sounds like a fine school for some fresh edutainment.

Kooley High throws a release party for the Summer Sessions EP March 27 at The Pour House with Skyzoo.

Comments (2)

Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Record Review

Twitter Activity

Most Recent Comments

Love it! All the songs are beautiful!

by Jon Champion on Record Review: The Return of The Veldt, The Shocking Fuzz of Your Electric Fur: The Drake Equation, Is Great (Record Review)

This release will be available Friday December 4th here:


Thanks! …

by Scott Phillips on Review: The electronic excellence of GNØER's Tethers Down (Record Review)

You should have let Currin write this. One of the best singers on earth and these were your observations? sounds …

by Remo on Record review: Jeanne Jolly's A Place to Run (Record Review)


Most Read

© 2016 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation