NC has always been quietly providing quality artist for Hip Hop, whether it’s J. Cole, Petey Pablo, or Omniscent and N-Tyce (early 90s NC Hip Hop scene). Another solid group from this area is Free The Optimus (FTO). “They’re in your mind all the time, that’s intrusion. I’m on the grind trying to find where the truth went. And, when you think for yourself, that’s a nuisance”, are the first bars that really stood out to me from Free the Optimus. “Family Tree” is a solid single from the Asheville, NC group. Over a velvety jazz guitar and mellow drums provided by Minithaze, they mesh with the beat perfectly speaking on how they are built around family and loyalty. “You’re my right hand, but I’d sacrifice a limb for you” says Mike L!ve as the track continues on. This is a very good display of their work, and hopefully there is more to come.
About FTO (Free The Optimus)
FTO members have spent the last few years touring relentlessly, developing a signature sound & message from both the road and their home base in Asheville, North Carolina. Featuring explosive improvisational hip hop (vinyl turntablism, beatboxing, & lyrical MCing) with a theatrical storyline & a focus on knowledge, culture, & respect, Free The Optimus takes great pride in redefining audiences’ expectation of what a show can be. FTO was named Best Hip Hop Group in the Carolinas in both 2016 & 2015 by the Carolina Music Awards. Free The Optimus has performed at the Hopscotch Music Festival, Blue Plum Festival, Harvest Boone Festival, DURM Hip Hop Summit, Boone in Blossom, Beats and Bars Festival, Hidden In The Hollow, Raleigh Fall Music Festival, GURP Fest, and at venues from New Orleans to Austin to Montpelier. They have toured and shared stages with The Hieroglyphics, Nappy Roots, Talib Kweli, DJ Enuff, Cannibal Ox, Big K.R.I.T., Three 6 Mafia, Guilty Simpson, Planet Asia, Blueprint, The Palmer Squares, BJ the Chicago Kid, Tanya Morgan, Illogic, Rapper Big Pooh, and many more.