Album Review: A Review of Theophilus London’s “This Charming Mixtape”
The head nodding of instant approval, as well as a sense of disbelief, does not even come close in describing the sort of feeling I experienced after listening to This Charming Mixtape. Theophilus London takes advantage of his opportunity to be center stage and utilizes everything he has in his arsenal to deliver a mixtape that is both spellbinding and eclectic. The mixtape combines the elements of eletro-pop and hip hop/rap together to produce something that will knock you out of your comfort zone and introduce you to a newly formed genre. From top to bottom, this entire mixtape takes you on a journey that you will undoubtedly enjoy once the ride is over with a multitude of upbeat and colorful beats together with the rhymes protruding from the archetype of individuality and diversity.
The roots of Theophilus London stem from NYC, within the state that has been home to the most abundant and influential acts in hip hop. His decision to stray from the mainstream avenue and open himself to a different outlet has paid dividends. There are few emcees who have delved into such a scenario as this and been successful. This Charming Mixtape not only reveals that Theophilus London is beginning to craft himself as a household name, but also that he’s already more than willing to take risks.
The appeal and popularity of music that was witnessed in the ’80s seems to be returning with a vengeance. This Charming Mixtape proves that eras that have come and gone will never have a final resting place in our minds. The generation that I have grown up with would never in their wildest dreams have thought that the sights and sounds of their childhood would be generated into music, let alone be encompassed within the vastness and richness of hip hop. There were some instances when a smile would appear on my face and I begin to chuckle every time I heard something familiar, like “You’re The One,” a track reminiscent of the storied video game Super Mario.
The various samples that are adopted in the mixtape originated from music that was well-recognized in the ’80s, including “Ain’t No Sunshine” by Bill Whither. The smooth delivery of his rhymes hand in hand with such a classic has allowed the former to become more evolved and more dynamic. Although offered as a snippet on This Charming Mixtape, “Humdrum Town” is a track that is both profound and personal. It tells the tale of Theophilus London, who yearns to live in a city devoid of all the fame and glory he’s recently attained and have it be more mundane in order to appreciate what he truly loves. The growing awareness of this track has enabled it to garner much interest by listeners who’ve ventured onto the Green Label Sound website and YouTube.
What else can I say about Theophilus London? He’s an anomaly that I’ve yet to fully analyze, let alone comprehend. However, This Charming Mixtape has enabled me to expand my horizons and engage myself with artists like Theophilus London who have turned the hands of time and taken the next step in revolutionizing music.