“Fuck them all, that’s my new motto
Rest in power to my friends, I’ll see you tomorrow
Hard to swallow, that’s how I’m living
All my girls is poison, word to Michael Bivins”

I came across the Sprinkle Lab-produced video for “Helicopter” just after it dropped in February 2012 and was immediately a fan. Throbbing bass and hungry lyrics set with an artistry that I hadn’t seen or heard in a while among the typically DIY and often overlooked rap scene of the Bay. Since then Antwon has done nothing but build; but dropping well produced songs and videos with a consistent balance of humor and severity (not to mention a coked up muppet) isn’t all he’s done. This year specifically showed a remarkable increase in professionalism both on and off “the court” with not only a great team behind him, but also a serious work ethic. The release of In Dark Denim, various collaborations, dropping the backing vocals and bringing on Sad Andy as hype man/DJ…tours and shows at SXSW and with tons of artists including Earl Sweatshirt, White Lung, Schoolboy Q, and a Converse Rubbertracks Live video collaboration with (another of the Bay’s best this year) Deafheaven’s Kerry McCoy, had fans stage diving, dancing, and yelling lyrics back at him increasingly all year long. I can’t tell if he’s in the right place at the right time or whether he’s manifesting that time himself, but ultimately it’s the fact that his music always feels familiar but uniquely his own that has him planted firmly as a stand out artist for me in 2013.

Patrick Brown is a Record Producer/Engineer and Owner of Different Fur Studios.