Jun 8, 2015

Review: Nehruvia: The Nehruvian EP - @BishopNehru; A Niles P. Joint (@Niles_P3)

Many rap critics have lamented the dearth of creativity in the genre as of recently, particularly from the new generation of emcees. A plethora of these new jacks want to either make carbon copies of Chicago drill, ATL trap/turn up, or California trippy type music, regardless of region and lack of talent. Enter Bishop Nehru. The Nanuet, NY rapper has gotten a lot of props around these parts and for good reason. He’s teamed up with DOOM for a stellar album last year and is signed to Nas’ Mass Appeal imprint. He recently released his Nehruvia: The Nehruvian EP for free last month. Seeing as Bishop Nehru was just snubbed on XXL’s annual Freshman list, now is as good of an opportunity as ever to give him some more exposure to those that don’t know him.

Nehru has had some good projects in the past, but this EP is perfect for anyone who wants a good example of his current skill level and overall introduction. After a short intro, Bishop Nehru showcases his lyrical acrobatics knack for hooks on Somebody Waits. User$ is a brooding track in which he complains about the presence of leeches and hangers on in his young career.  Que Hampton stops by for the album’s only guest appearance on MansSin which is more sorrowful sounding than anything else on the project. Thankfully the mood lightens up some with the appropriately named MellowWithMe. This effectively puts the project into a more smooth trajectory without sacrificing lyricism, creating a terrific sweet spot.

The best song on the entire EP is [justfriends]ZONE. If you can’t tell, it’s about the place millions of men and women find themselves where their relationship aspirations go to die.  Nehru has a melodic singsongy type of flow throughout the bridge and hook. This song has the ability to be played on both a dance floor and in your car as you drive on a late night trip. The laid back feels continues on Breath (Prana/$pirit) and Harmony Glass. The latter gives off a vibe reminiscent of A Tribe Called Quest.  The final song You & I (Place to Find) is a bit of a misstep.  Lyrically and hook wise it’s good, but the Charles Hamilton beat (the only one not produced by Nehru) uses an Isley Brothers sample in a more choppy than necessary manner. Not bad, but could have used more tweaking to have it fit the album’s aural theme.

Bishop Nehru produced the entire EP (save for the bonus track) himself. This is the thing with him: he’s equally adept at rapping, making beats, and crafting hooks. And, he’s done all of this at 18, which puts him a cut above all of his peers. I usually don’t like to compare emcees because I want them to stand on their own merit, but Nehru reminds me of a more focused and less eccentric Charles Hamilton without the baggage and penchant for putting out too many mixtapes. This whole project isn’t mixed cleanly but that’s kind of the point. This was meant to be something Nehru made between bigger projects, almost like a collection of loosies. If you wanted to get into Bishop Nehru, this is a good place to start. If you're already a fan and need something to hold you over until his major label debut is released, check this out. The greedy fan in me wishes that this was longer or more crisp sounding on some tracks, but that’s not really the point. It’s cool that Nehru took the time to release something for his fans while we wait. But yeah, put your money on this kid. Expect big things from him in the future.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

You can stream Nehruvia: The Nehruvian EP below courtesy DJ Booth.


Multimedia Journalist, Founder and Chief Editor of WTM Host of A-Side B-Side Podcast and more. I like to talk about stuff and write it down. Sometimes to a microphone. Either way, I need you to feel this.

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