Self-proclaimed hip-hop/pop duo Cardiff Brothers first sprang onto the scene from the American state of Rhode Island in 2014. Following on from their well received debut release The Beginning and hot off the heals of a launch party at New York’s Webster Hall on May 2nd, siblings John and Jake have just unleashed their latest EP, We Are Cardiff Brothers, upon the world.

The compilation gets going with “Same Mistakes”, as cheerful acoustic guitars unfold behind crisp vocals. A light beat soon sets in aside a gentle bass line and sails along peacefully. Its blend of pop, R ‘N’ B and softcore rap allows for an innocuous and laid back opening.

Afterwards, the soft synths of “Got A Man” develop with a pressing edge, while an expressive yet reserved melody unfolds steadily. There’s more of a hip-hop flair prevalent here. The moderately explicit lyrics display contentious connotations, but never become overly indignant.

“Koopa” arrives next by way of cheery chimes that dance forward through a fast paced harmony atop pleasant percussion. It’s very upbeat musically, featuring a lot of airy instrumentation which generates an optimistic ambience.

The otherworldly synths of “I Don’t Know” succeed it, cutting across a slow moving verse to forge a solemn and serious atmosphere. The mood stays sedate as it strolls pensively towards a mellow and weighty climax.

“Triple Threat” rises out of its aftermath, wielding coarse vocals that combine with heavy electronics and adopt a bitter disposition. It’s a very busy finale whose fierce execution emits a lamentable vibe without being overly forceful.

For the most part, the Cardiff Brothers have put together an accessible record that makes for a fairly easy listen. Despite the occasional irate undertones and intermittent casual curse words, the material here really has a lot more in common with mainstream pop than it does with hardcore rap/hip-hop. You can check it out now on iTunes.

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