A slow, dramatic build up opens the record as the listener patiently waits for the beat to drop. Von5019 hits the track with a laid back, confident, metaphorically flow that draws comparisons to a BIG hip hop legend from NYC. The production is simple, the perfect canvas allowing you to hear each of Von’s words clearly. In just a few minutes you can feel the honesty and relatable perspective Von is coming from, leaving you anticipating more.
Misery loves company and many people you come across don’t want to see you win, they would rather see you fail. Von takes a dive into this subject as he asks why people have this negative mentality and speaks on what it takes to overcome. The production is unique here, drums with a range in their note scale are the highlight. Von also adds a solid feature verse to the record, more bars giving you the motivation to follow your dreams despite the naysayers.
Lessons are the basis of life, we make choices right and wrong then learn from the consequences. Von perfectly sets this message to music in ‘Life’ showing how we have to adapt and make the best of what we have. The instrumental included a soulful singing sample that really fits with the calming, hopeful tone of the lyrics. Von once again shows wisdom and understanding in this record that not only gives the listener something to relate to but also to learn.
When you have someone real in your corner it’s hard to want for anything else. Von paints a vivid picture of the security and qualities a solid woman will provide. Stating how she was there for him when he didn’t have much, Von describes how this show of loyalty has earned his affection. In a genre constantly criticized for how it portrays women, ‘Rider’ is a much needed record in hip hop today.
Guitar strings, hi hats, and a groovy bass line set the mood for ‘Threats’. Von speaks on those out here today that think playing the tough guy card is the only way to gain respect. You can feel the disgust and lack of respect Von has for these fabricators throughout the song. This track is a smooth ride and a statement to the listeners who should watch for the signs and avoid these liars at all costs.
Floating over a classic Drake sample, Von laments about past relationships on ‘Too Long’. This record is an honest, vulnerable look at how Von didn’t appreciate someone and he presently regrets how the relationship ended. The production is solid, featuring synths and fitting smooth percussion elements laced with a looked over but dope sample. Von shows maturity here as he takes the blame for his mistakes and explains how his greed made him lose what was most important.
Von uses this track as an opportunity to showcase his lyrical ability. The track is split in two separate parts as a dope beat change brings in a new verse and flow. Von opens the record showcasing the flow, wordplay, and storytelling skills. The gems of wisdom and witty rap style show Von has swagger to match his depth.
Stress About You
Honesty is rare today and Von brings all truth to his love interest on ‘Stress About You’. He speaks on how even though she may be in his life, she can’t be the main priority. The production has an R&B feel, led by synths with strong bass and percussion elements. Von ends the record talking directly to the ladies with some hard to hear, blunt facts.
Proving that storytelling is not a lost art in hip hop, Von tells a gripping story in ‘Telly’. The vocabulary is strong on this track, giving the listener the ability to visualize as they head the record. Voicemails bring even more realism to the story and adds a layer of emotion towards the ending. The production is great as well as the uptempo pace matches with the growing anticipation of the story as it develops.
Speaking to those who turned their back on Von during his come up, ‘Snakes’ is a confident message of success. Despite the inconvenience and unfavorable circumstance that haters can bring, Von promises to accomplish his goals no matter what. Von showcases his trademark flow, as he effortlessly floats over the beat kicking principles. ‘Snakes’ has a fitting message for the final track on the project, summing up what it takes to persevere.
'Syrup City Saint' is a major production and has the feeling of a movie premiere for Von5019 as this much anticipated project has a lot to offer. Von5019 brings a very mature perspective in his music, you can sense this from his choice of vocabulary, the concepts in each record, and the honesty in which he tells what he has seen, been through, and believes. 'Syrup City Saint' is many things for the listener as it can be something to relate to and also a way to learn the best way to approach some tough, yet common situations for us all. These include things like relationships, jealousy, lust, and many other emotions and situations we all commonly face.
Von's beat selection is soulful, with a. moderate tempo yet a bounce that gives each record a groove. Von's lyrical style is laid back with a versatile flow that dances across the instruments. The punchlines and metaphor come across in more of a wordplay manner, showing the originality and witty concepts Von is able to create. 'Syrup City Saint' is a solid offering and definitely the record for hip hop fans across the board as it speaks to you from the heart and brings the rapping skills needed to make great music.