B1GJuice holds a special place in my heart. On top of releasing consistently-solid projects, he was also the first artist I covered for DOMINIONATED. While it feels like a lifetime has passed since then, the newest release from the Bramptom-based rapper, “Drought,” demonstrates the extent of his musical evolution in a few short years. 

The track features one of the coldest instrumentals I’ve heard in Canadian hip-hop this year. The crackling piano keys and haunting saxophone create a frigid atmosphere, almost enough to feel the wintry wind biting your skin. With Brampton being a short two-hour drive from Buffalo, New York, it is no wonder the instrumental is reminiscent of that American city’s most lauded label — Griselda Records.

B1GJuice’s vocals shine on this single, with his booming voice being layered with menacing, pitched-down echoes. The hook is a brief moment of respite. The drums subside, you catch your breath. The lyrics are reflective and pensive: “Weathered the drought / Jumped off the porch / Had to figure it out / Couldn’t live with the doubt”. The warbled sample eventually fades into the void, leaving only anticipation for what B1GJuice releases next.

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Gordon Lightfoot 
Gord’s Gold