Out of the entire underground music scene, Egovert is undoubtedly one of my absolute favorite artists making music. His dexterity is unbelievable, his charisma is captivating, and his sheer talent is undeniable, to say the least. He just has such a special talent of pushing the boundaries no matter how wild or unbelievable they might seem, but he does so in such a tasteful manner that he’s definitely an artist you need to keep an eye on. Cash Bently is a talent that I’m less familiar with, but I have heard some of his music previously and I think it’s safe to say that he can be described and categorized quite similarly to his fellow Virginia counterpart.
When I talked to Ego and he told me he had a collaborative project on the way with Cash, I couldn’t wait to tune in and see what kind of hecticness that the two were going to bring to life. Considering Ego’s last EP was Kids These Days, one of my favorite projects overall this entire year, I was expecting something even wilder. Despite my anticipations, after listening to Drugs and Flowers, quite the opposite vibe happened in the best possible way. Rather than going into the chaotic party lifestyle that ran rampant all over KTD, Drugs and Flowers takes a few steps back, calming the two artists and allowing them to get much more introspective and honest with some of the struggles and qualms that come along with their lifestyles.
This is evident from the moment you press play on the first track “Love Yourself”, which utilizes a soulful, relaxed instrumental that is very slightly Poppy while still remaining relaxed and serene. As Cash comes in to begin the song, his almost robotic vocal effects are evidently perfectly imperfect. While some of the notes he sings might waiver a bit, the effects correct themselves and provide some depth and elements to the track that simply couldn’t be added in later on. As Ego comes in for the first verse, he brings the track back down to Earth slightly, maintaining a nonchalant, calm demeanor while describing how you simply can’t dwell on things but rather hope that everything works itself out in the end.
As Cash comes in for the second verse, he ditches many of the more unnatural vocal effects and purifies his delivery, gifting us with some composed lines that just work perfectly with the production. Unexpectedly towards the end, we’re hit with a ritardando as the tempo slows down and almost switches to a more R&B-inspired record as both artist’s words echo in your mind, sometimes due to the resounding effects used, but other times because of the eye-opening lyrical content that they’re both showing off.
The following song “Noche Sensual” completely switches things up incredibly. In this song, a reggaeton-influenced instrumental is utilized as almost every single word is sung in Spanish. While I was previously unaware of the fact that these two talents were bilingual, this just makes me respect their craft even more, although I don’t quite understand the language myself, in all honesty. Despite my illiteracy, the notes they sing are just pure and unphased, bringing a perfect track to life, and even if you don’t understand the lyrics, you get a sense of the emotion and passion behind every word each artist speaks.
When I heard the peaceful guitar melody begin to play on “Conversations”, I knew we were in for another incredibly introspective, unapologetically beautiful track that fits into the overall vibe of this EP seamlessly. As they both begin their respective parts, they apologize for the conversations they’ve had while intoxicated, going back on what they said and sharing the fact that their sober thoughts don’t necessarily align with their drunk words. As Ego melodiously recites his verse, background ad-libs are pitched up to emphasize his message, providing additional depth to the already meaningful and emotive record. When Cash sings, the way he raises and lowers the intonation in his delivery is impeccable and truly brings out the emotional qualities behind his message exquisitely.
Finally, the concise project ends on a high note with “Tell Me Stories”, a soft, pensive track that culminates the EP in such a perfect fashion. Filtered singing begins right off the bat before a pitched-up sample plays for a moment, paving the way for Egovert to get some final thoughts out. During his verse, he boasts some quick, choppy lines as some are even pitched down, further accentuating the message he’s trying to get across. His words are soft and meditative as he never truly elevates his enthusiasm, but this couples with the thoughtful qualities within the song’s production in an astonishing manner. When Cash comes in for the second verse, he takes a different approach by showing off some additional high-pitched notes that might be slightly more vivacious but don’t distract you from the eloquent tone of the record itself.
Although this project might only contain four songs, each track is stuffed to the brim with contemplative topics, some more surface-level than others, but every single subject covered gives you a look into the lives of these two creatives perfectly. While some of their previous work might boast their fun, carefree and chaotic lifestyles, this EP takes a step back, allowing you to be an outsider looking in, in a different, more meaningful way. While some of the effects on Cash’s vocals might be off the walls, he does a textbook job of not taking them too far or making them come off as being too experimental. Egovert faultlessly grounds every song as well, remaining calm throughout every track and providing some normalcy in the form of carefully thought-out lines that give a look into his soul unlike ever before. This duo truly came together and leveled each other up on all fronts throughout Drugs and Flowers in an almost indescribable fashion, but they made sure to gift fans with one of the most incredible projects I’ve heard in recent memory. Whether you’re familiar with the two Virginia-based talents or this is your introduction to them, make sure you take some time and check out their brand-new EP as soon as you possibly can.