A Welcome Addition to Toronto’s Grimy Underground…
“Manic energy” is the perfect term of self-description for the sound of Toronto Hip-Hop duo Just John and Dom Dias. Long-time contributor to local acts of artistic rebellion, Just John came into contact with Dom Dias to create their first Don EP in June 2018, and they’re already back to give us more. These artists have come out swinging on their new EP Don II – released November 16th. Having just made the cover of FADER magazine, these artists are marching forward with a promising blend of punk, electronica, and Toronto Hip-Hop that you’ll have a hard time putting in a box.
It feels like the new year has come early with the gorgeously bass-infused banger “Mirror (Fireworks)” where Just John machine-guns his words over an eclectic mix of firework samples and steel drum riffs, proving to doubters once again that steel drums are still very much hype if you know how to use them. Watch the music video for "Mirror (Fireworks)" below.
The creative repurposing of almost cliché effects continues with “Get Away.” Resourceful production by Dom Dias gives the listener a dose of trap air horns that is somehow simultaneously subtle and authoritative, giving Just John a wonderfully punk canvas to house his aggressive titular refrain.
Energy is carried over through “Bag," where both artists bounce between ominously quiet production and verse before exploding back into the polished grime they do so very well.
Borrowed from their first project, the final song in this mix tells you that these guys are ready to take to the festival stage. Fearsome bass, fine-tuned ferocity, and a jumpy flute sample that’ll have people moshing in line for the washroom make “Soundboi” a triumphant climax to a strikingly strong EP.
With such a strong project right out of the gate, it’s clear that Just John and Dom Dias have full intention of making a name for themselves. With such an unpredictable sound and their impressive delivery, these are two underground artists who seem unlikely to stay buried for much longer.
You can find several of the tracks off Don II on our City Soundcheck playlist via Spotify.