After releasing an album about the catharsis of a breakup and a video where the main takeaway is how we unravel once relationships we considered warm and secure fray away, Nocando finds himself in brief isolation for his latest Severed visual. “Mykraphone Myk” is a tribute to two things that molded Nocando as a rapper and as a man. “It’s an homage to an amazing rapper, Myka 9 (my OG) and to an amazing neighborhood Leimert Park (My Neighborhood),” Nocando told us in an email.
Unlike the warmth of “Severed,” the latest track from the LA rapper’s haunting album places him square in the middle of Leimert Park, shirtless and under dim lighting. It’s here where James McCall honed his skills as a battle rapper, and more often than not, walked the streets looking for something to get into.
“You need thick skin and a good lawyer / A registered gun, a fake smile and a cold shoulder,” he raps with instruction about surviving. The cold, icy demeanor immediately switches around the tail end of the second verse where his ratchets up his anger and animosity into a volcanic verbal eruption. “We been Hungary like that country by Romania,” he shouts, patting his slender frame as if he’s missed more meals than days on a school calendar.
The self-directed video for “Mykraphone Myke” shows Nocando at his most honest. There are no cast or crew of extras and the lone segment of the video that feels welcoming? Myka 9 himself appears at the end, beat-boxing and scat rapping to juxtapose the built-in anger that possesses Nocando. He’s searching for affirmation and vindication under these LA lights, yelling as loud as he can just to be heard. The Elusive-produced cut is as skeletal as McCall is, picking up light keys and a throaty bass line to drive the point on home. Watch the “Mykraphone Myke” video up top.