Wayward’s Friends 2 Bops With the Best
Local hip-hop group WayWard has released its long-awaited second album, Friends 2. Consisting of two longtime pillars of the Chippewa Valley hip-hop scene – Fathom and Mr. Pizzy – along with DJ BluePauly2, this is the first public output from WayWard since the release of their first album, WisConSin, in November 2015. After three years of anticipation, Friends 2 is a diverse offering, featuring vocal contributions from close collaborators Alyssa Thoms and Billy Ballads. From start to finish, Friends 2 features nine songs that hop, strut, and offer something for every listener. The album takes you on a journey from the upbeat riot “Dinosaur,” to childhood nostalgia for the ’90s, to modern relationship woes. Thoms – a member of the band We’re Wolves along with Fathom – adds a smooth, laid-back contrast to the hard-hitting, rhythmic raps from the emcees. The track “Check This!” forms a buoyant dynamic, perfectly blending Billy Ballads into WayWard’s more party-anthem stylings. Feel the vibes of a night on the town with references to local sights, sounds, and sensations. From drunken strolls down Barstow Street to open mic nights, Friends 2 is a full snapshot of local life in Eau Claire. Do your ears a favor and give Friends 2 a listen via waywardec.bandcamp.com.