Kota The Friend teams up with legendary producer Statik Selektah « To Kill A Sunrise »

The beauty of « To Kill a Sunrise » dwells in its warmth and Kota’s inspiring resilience as an independent lyricist. Win or lose, he’ll just keep walking up, waking up to a new sunrise.

Kinda like our favorite athletes, artists have seasons. So far, the bright colors of spring and summer have suited Kota The Friend very well. Year after year, the Brooklyn MC has built a fascinating body of work.

« The point of our existence isn’t physical » For Colored Boys


Soulful, personable and intimate, Kota The Friend’s music is the quintessence of timelessness.

His 2019’s album, FOTO, is a great example. Two years after its release, FOTO is on its way to timelessness, it is such a great representation of Kota The Friend and what shaped him as a man. Moreover, the album shows how poignant the NYC MC can be, especially, with a song like « For Colored Boys », a letter written for his son that became, by the power of his words, a message for young black men.

Working with legendary producer Selektah

As frantic as last year was, Kota The Friend kept on sending out good vibes, coming out with Lyrics To Go Vol .1 and Everything .

This year, the Brooklyn MC follows the same plan. After the release of Lyrics To Go Vol 2. last January, Kota the friend gifts us with To Kill A Sunrise, a collab album with hip-hop’s staple Statik Selektah. The legendary DJ and producer is no stranger to collabs, throughout the years he has created a lane of his own with the likes of Termanology, Action Bronson, Reks and Joey Bada$$. Kota The Friend and Statik Selektah already linked-up a few years ago on the DJ’ show Showoff Radio.

The best of both worlds

By finding a common ground, both Kota The Friend and Statik Selektah expose us to a new chamber of their respective sound. In Kota the Friend, Statik Selektah sees his music taking a mellow turn, due to the MC’s collected interpretation. The DJ and producer created the ideal canvas for the MC to distill his thoughts.

« I’m on my legacy, put my children ahead of me » The Cold

From the get-go, the first three tracks – « Wolves », « Hate »  and « The Cold » – do tell a lot about Kota The Friend’s mindset, where he’s at and where he wants to go. Above all, he expresses a strong desire to stay off negativity, a desire to focus on what matters. As the next track suggests it, « The Love » is the core focus for the Brooklynite, love for his art, love for his son.

« Takin’ in the sun rain, open up the front door, open up the windows and let it all in » Day Glow

« The Love » is when the warmth of the project truly kicks in, the feeling increases with the stellar « Go Now ». The Haile Supreme-assisted song reminds us of Kanye West’s famous saying : “You Got The Drugs, You Got the Music, You Got The Wine?”. Take the intoxicating substances out of the equation, keep the people cooling out at the beach, a sunny day, a little breeze and a love interest that can seem to get out of your mind, this is « Go Now »’s all mood.

On Statik Selektah’ subtle instrumental and with Haile Supreme’s perfect contribution, Kota The Friend puts his best effort out to understand what the women of his dream wants out of their relationship.

Wisdom & Philosophy within the lyrics

If he is seeking for peace of mind and simplicty, Kota The Friend doesn’t try to paint himself as a holier than thou figure either. Throughout the project he doesn’t fail to mention that they are, indeed, a couple of cracks in the wall. One of the striking moments of the project appears on « Live & Direct », where the MC rhymes :

« Me and my brothers speak about our trauma, About emotional damage handed off by our father, And how it wasn’t intentional but a cry for help, How long can a man carry the world before he cry for help? »

« Live & Direct » allows Kota The Friend to be more abrupt in his delivery, the song echoes « Wolves » and « The Cold », where the tone of Statik Selektah’s beats is more serious, leaning towards a darker blue.

« Walk to the sunrise, Run to the sunset » Sunset

The duo ends the journey with the very solemn « Sunset ». For the last track, Kota The Friend rhymes with the serenity of a man who reminisces after a long journey and realize how far he has come.

Alfred Dilou

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