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Hometown Highlights: Lil Siege, Burrows, Paris Mason + more

Lots of excellent local music has been coming out lately. Lots of that excellent local music can be found below. There's some hip-hop,  some post-hardcore, some drone, and some hardcore. If you don't like it, speak with the Shuttlecock Defense Squad.

Samurai - "Blastin'"
Samurai recently returned to Kansas City for a visit while school is out in Atlanta. Coinciding with this pilgrimage was the release of his new tape "Rocketship Samurai Stardom Awaits." A few tracks on the tape show Samurai venturing into storytelling mode, but "Blastin'" is a candy painted post-trap sing-along that would fit perfectly in a @SheLovesMeechie dance video.

Burrows - "Longinus"
Four years after two songs were post to Bandcamp, Burrows has finally released a full EP. Brimming with nervous, negative energy, the band -- fronted by Josh Holloway -- has delivered five tracks of aggressive and challenging post-hardcore riddled with screams and math. Kansas City's DIY scene better hope this band is back for good.

Dettsa - "Crucify Me"
Religion isn't a topic that Dettsa has shied away from in his music. His first mixtape was titled "Who Listens When God Doesn't" and one of that tape's hardest tracks -- "Been Had" -- proclaims that everyone wants to be a god, "but the gods wanna be like Detts." His new single "Crucify Me" takes things a step further by likening his plight to that of Jesus'. Twinkling keys from an A-Team of producers (Kye Colors, Bam Keith, and El Jason) assist Dettsa in creating a very collected delivery of one of the boldest statements an artist can make. That being said, if cleanliness is next to godliness then Dettsa is as clean as a whistle.

City Watts - "Not Afraid" ft. Rory Fresco
City Watts' half-whispered hook may sound lazy to a casual listener, but anyone with an ear for quality pop music can hear why this song works. "Not Afraid" is a track that can quickly creep into your subconscious and re-emerge at a moment's notice. Watts' chorus takes only a moment to repeat, so instead of unleashing an unwieldy torrent of rhymes, he does less with more. "Fast life / Thirty on my side / Not afraid to die" covers the usual rap tropes, but does so in a unique, compact way. Add a glamorous guest verse from Rory Fresco and it's a hit.

Paris Mason - "Purple Rain" ft. Sahvannes
Wichita's Paris Mason and Kansas City's Sahvannes -- with producer Blackrose -- have teamed up to make what is arguably one of the murkiest tracks to emerge from the Midwest this year. "Purple Rain" is a sinister, lean-friendly track that showcases Mason's unimpeded coolness and Sahvannes' increasingly inspired flows.

Lil Siege - "Lil Siege"
Many respectable rock bands have started off with a self-titled song. It's yet to be known if Lil Siege considers himself a "rockstar," but the Kansas City rapper makes it seem that way on his debut track. Siege has called in production from Captain Crunch and Bighead -- known for their work with Lil Peep, Lil Pump, and a slew of other buzzing rappers -- and dishes out a highly melodic ego anthem that doubles as an introduction.

Young Mvchetes - "Ooh"
Young Mvchetes made their disruptive debut earlier this year with a self-titled EP of abrasive, politicized hip-hop. Following the EP was a single premiered on Shuttlecock. As the act's first show approaches, another new track has been made available. The Mvchetes emcees have a field day on "Ooh," firing off bar after bar after bar of social commentary over a cold, mid-paced beat that sounds like a hammer hitting an iron.

Blindside USA - "Shutdown"
"Shutdown" is the first song to be released from "Fountain City Sessions" -- the next Blindside USA record due out in August and their first on Killing A Sound Records. The band has nearly perfected the NYHC two-step anthem and flaunts those chops on this track. The opening guitar lines on the song tease at a more metallic sound, but the song's overall sound never leaves the genre of hardcore. Perhaps the following record will contain a crossover.

Expo Seventy - "First Movement"
Justin Wright has been releasing music as Expo 70 for over a decade now. The KC-via-LA musician has released countless hours of improvised experimental music and filled many 12" records with these 20 minute tracks. "America Here & Now Sessions" features two drummers accompanying Wright for over 50 minutes of psychedelic drone music. The first of the record's three movements features Wright and his band constructing and deconstructing a supremely hypnotic piece of what he has previously called "heavy meditation."

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