Breeze Brewin of The Juggaknots Releases New Album “Hindsight” | Review
Anyone who came of age during the rise of hip hop independents in the 1990s is familiar with the names Breeze Brewin, Breezly Brewin, Breeze, or Paul Smith. All one and the same, Breeze Brewin became a household name as one-third of the legendary underground crew The Juggaknots, and further for as a collaborator with the Indelible MC’s. This is, of course, assuming that your household was into layered lyrics and confident flows. Now in 2021, the Breeze has returned with his new album “Hindsight”.
Who is Breeze Brewin?
It was a pleasant surprise to see this release pop-up in my Spotify new releases. I assume this is because I’m constantly playing joints from The Juggaknots and more frequently, the Prince Paul produced A Prince Among Thieves. On A Prince Among Thieves, Breeze Brewin played the protagonist in a well-crafted concept album which essentially was the first successful “Hip-Hopera”.
When I was at UMass-Amherst, I was always utilizing the campus library computers to download the latest in underground hip hop. This is when I first heard “Trouble Man” which had me hooked on everything Breeze and The Juggaknots touched. Unfortunately, their underground classic Clear Blue Skies never got the acclaim others during the independent era received.
Hindsight is 20/20
Although well respected in the corners of every hip hop scene, Breeze as a mainstream success seemed elusive. Almost 25 years after the first Juggaknots release, Breeze Brewin makes it obvious on his new album “Hindsight” that many in the industry slept on his talents for far too long.
Breeze’s lyrics are layered and his flow is complex, yet it’s smooth and flawlessly delivered. His cadence is calm, although not monotone or emotionless. Breeze is the epitome of the emcee keeping the cipher outside the spot going until 3AM. He’s a natural who continues to make it seem effortless on “Hindsight”.
The album features production from Swiss-born Sebb Bash, Marco Polo, and The Juggaknots crew themselves. King Oxymoron produced by Marco Polo could be considered the lead single off an album where every song carries weight. Other tracks fans must peep are Gotta Love It, The Application, Eye Poppa, The Univited.
Overall, the album feels like a time machine that takes me back to days of back-packing with spray cans and corner freestyle sessions. The most amazing part of the Hindsight album is that Breeze Brewin hasn’t lost a step. He is as composed as ever on the mic and the lyrics are just as fresh as they were in the day. It’s been 25 years, since The Juggaknots first burst on the scene through Fondel ‘Em Records with the release of Clear Blue Skies. Amazingly, Breeze Brewin is still as dope as he was then and easily remains your favorite rapper’s rapper.