The sixth album from legendary hip-hop group Souls of Mischief, There Is Only Now, is a unique cinematic 90s crime tale of love, loss, and revenge. A conceptual collaboration with producer Adrian Younge and the first release on his freshly launched Linear Labs Records label, There Is Only Now gets its inspiration from a near fatal incident involving group members A-Plus, Opio, Tajai, and Phesto early in their careers. Set in 1994, There Is Only Now serves as a bookend to two decades of music since the release of their seminal debut album, ‘93 Til Infinity.
There Is Only Now sees the Souls of Mischief crew members trading bars with a cast of hip-hop and soul luminaries. Narrated by A Tribe Called Quest member Ali Shaheed Muhammed—as DJ for fictional local Oakland radio station K-NOW—the album’s story unfolds under his all-seeing eye. Busta Rhymes makes an appearance as the story’s villain, Womack, on “Womack’s Lament,” while William Hart of the legendary vocal soul group, The Delfonics, lends his buttery falsetto to the contemplative “Another Side of You.” Snoop Dogg drops knowledge on the situation between Stoney and Womack with an ice cold verse on the title track “There Is Only Now,” and Scarub from Living Legends goes in on “Stone Cold.”
Souls of Mischief and Adrian Younge have created a hip-hop album like no other. The result of a special moment for all involved, There Is Only Now proves that after two decades in the rap game hip-hop’s Fab Four remains committed to the expansion of their legacy as hip-hop innovators and pioneers.