If you’ve heard anything from hard rock mainstays Thousand Foot Krutch– in particular, if you’ve heard anything from their early years– it’s clear to see that their musical legacy is twofold: hip-hop and rock and roll, inextricably intertwined. That rapcore sound has launched them up the charts and into arenas over the past 20 years. As TFK developed a legacy in the rock community, frontman and veteran songwriter Trevor McNevan began hinting that he’d also like to honor his hip-hop roots at a deeper level. The time for that desire to come to full fruition is finally here with his hip-hop passion project I Am The Storm and its first release, Fight Musik, Vol 1.
The 8 song project displays the same attention to detail that McNevan has put into every song he’s crafted before, fueling a hip-hop experience that’s tight and engaging. “Beast Mode” is a hype song, full of electric enthusiasm. “Freq Show” has a funky edge and a delightfully skillful flow on McNevan’s bars, spitting “when I was 10, I realized I was dangerous with a pen.”
“Fire in the Booth” and “Man vs. Machine” feel like vibing club anthems, fusing the hip-hop flow with electronic sensibilities. “Man vs. Machine” in particular validates McNevan in the hip-hop arena, showing his ability to drop bars with incredible speed and accuracy. “Hip Hop Hi(story)” backs up that credibility, taking listeners back into his history with the artform.
But it’s not all party in this collection of songs. Listeners have grown used to Trevor McNevan’s thoughtful songwriting, and that is present here in tracks like the melancholy, introspective “These Lines” or the organic instrumentation of “Home.” Songs likes these (and closing interlude “Who Are We?”) ask key questions about identity and purpose, looking beyond genre mechanics and subcultures to reflect on our need for grounding, for living with intention. With a lot more melody on these tracks, we also get moments of that classic vocal style that ranges from buttery smooth to searing in a heartbeat.
Although the sound that Trevor McNevan has developed with I Am The Storm is very distinct from Thousand Foot Krutch, it’s created with a blend of craftsmanship, adrenaline and humble grounding in divine purpose that the TFK Army will instantly recognize and be able to enjoy. But beyond how Fight Musik, Vol 1 relates to McNevan’s other work, these songs are so exceptional as hip-hop pieces that they easily stand alone. McNevan can clearly hold his own in the hip-hop arena as well as on the hard rock stage.
Related Artists: LZ7, Manafest, Thousand Foot Krutch