I’ve been following St. Louis artist Bates for many years, so I am very familiar with her capability to open minds to conscious thought with catchy punch lines, lyrically magical bars, and dope beats. Throughout the years there have been several projects released that built up to this very moment including “For Colored Folk” and “Strange Woman” as predecessors proved that with just a little something extra Bates would go over the moon! “One God” plays with your emotions.
This magical marriage of music between Bates and SUPER Producer Major 88 Keys has changed the game!! This entire album excites my soul and I am here for EVERY NOTE!! Bates does an awesome job conveying the vital need for art as an expression as she pours her soul into every bar on every song, I FELT THAT. “One God” evokes anger, sadness, happiness, love, and conscious knowledge over beats infused with piano, electric guitars, organs, super drums and other instrumental variations that will carry you away into the story and make you laugh or cry while dancing or simply catching a vibe. It was hard for me to choose only 3 tracks because I could write about them all however these are the 3 that made it to my daily playlist immediately:
‘Idolatry’ is raw anger and bravado manifesting over heavy bass lines, electric guitars and high hats. Bates proclaims, “Might just call me Midas since I’m golden!” in reference to her amazing ability to transform simple ideas into greatness. This is Hip hop Rock n Roll fusion that lovers of both genres will love. The anger here is conveyed via rough vocal tones and direct semi shouting that doesn’t kill your ear drums. Within the bars of this track, Bates sends a shout out to East St. Louis legend Terra T-Baby “OohWee” Jenkins who has always been known for being 1000% herself as she fights for rights of both black and LGBT movements. “Sick of bein humble, I’m tryna get saved; sick of bein ran over…” End of story.
'Apostasy' ft. Kourtney Nicole, Jaqui Rogers, & Joshua Stanton – This one immediately opens up into a melodic Nas & Lauryn Hill vibe. With Kourtney Nicole leading the vocal arrangement with perfect follow up from Jaqui and Joshua there is no way you haven’t fallen in love with just the intro. Of course Bates takes us away and tells a tale that will indeed make you want to avoid Jesus’ call. “I’mma keep my phone on silent...Just in case Jesus calls…” How many of us have an imperfect life and can relate?
‘Unclean’ is my absolute favorite! Another Hip-Hop Rock n Roll fusion giving me nostalgia somewhere in the arena of “Throw some D’s on that biihhh!! (Rich Boy) ” If that was yo song back in the day, this will be too! The best way I can describe it is whispers of the beat for “Throw Some D’s” infused with your favorite Baptist organist clownting on the keys sparring with electric guitars and the super star drummer showing out to keep the beat going in the background, I believe we’ve gone to church, Amen! The bars throw anger and frustration with a release in the end over the current state of black culture particularly pointing out the misuse of hip-hop’s platform to send the wrong message to the masses. ‘Unclean’ tells what the problem is, where we went wrong, and how it can be fixed.
These 3 don’t even give half the story. “One God” is absolutely worthy of every moment you spend streaming any of the 10 beautifully orchestrated tracks that leave you wanting more! This hip hop/rock n roll/R&B fusion was created to pull on your heart strings and infect your soul with empathy and understanding of every story given. Bates, you’ve got a winner!