By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
It was supposed to be one of the most hotly anticipated releases in the history of Dallas hip-hop. That was 2010.
Turns out the delay in the release of When Pigs Fly from local rap duo A.Dd+ was the most well-calculated move the young group could have executed. Although it was about complete this time last year, A.Dd+ was savvy enough to realize that their recipe was something that Dallas needed. So they took a few extra months to not only polish the release but to also raise their stock on the local scene.
Now, truly, these boys seem poised for the big time: When Pigs Fly is a showcase album, a snapshot of an important turning point in local hip-hop. With a sonic bed laid down by local superstar producer Picnictyme, their vibe stands with a foot in the tradition of bass-heavy D-Town music, while keeping the other firmly in the territory of the master emcee. The lyrics are smart and meaningful, striking a balance between inspirational anecdotal rap and straight-up party rap. It sounds enough like the rap we're used to hearing around here—the stuff meant to get your attention. But it's different enough from that stock to suck you in and make you a fan.
Mostly, that's because When Pigs Fly is an album with soul. Each of the emcees, Paris Pershun and Slim Gravy, possesses a serious vocal skill that allows him to appeal to the party rap set while still maintaining the instructional approach that responsible emcees adopt when they realize that their skill can reach a wide swath of followers.
This last year was a refocusing on those talents. The final version of When Pigs Fly, funded by a successful crowd-source campaign on Kickstarter, feels like a complete document. And it turns the group's unique strengths into something Dallas can be proud of. Just ask the high-power list of local guests, which includes Dustin Cavazos, Money Waters, DJ Sober and Brown from Sore Losers, among others.
It's no wonder that, in the build-up to this release, this duo has elevated itself to the top of the local scene. When Pigs Fly was a fantastic album in 2010—trust us, we heard the original version. But the final manifestation of the album is nothing short of a classic.
And something tells us that they're just getting started.