If the name of Detroit rapper and lyricist Noveliss doesn’t sound too familiar, those following the genre more closely might know him under his previous moniker: J-Roc, who was, and still is a member of the quite known hip-hop collective Clear Forces. Yet, what sets Noveliss apart from other hip-hop artists?
Well, first of all, Noveliss declares himself as a big fan of everything connected with Nerd culture. For that reason, it was no problem for him to try and come up with his own brand of Nerdcore.
Having interests and tastes that are not often associated with hip-hop culture are definitely reflected on both the musical and lyrical content of his latest album, Book of Changes.
If that title seems familiar and reminds you of that ancient Chinese manuscript I-Ching, there is no need to guess. That is exactly what it is.
Using beatmaker/producer and composer Dixon Hill’s jazzy, very atmospheric backbones, Noveliss based all the lyrics here on I-Ching, using the original texts as the base. Hill used samples, live instruments, and field recordings to create the sonic template for this record.
Each song corresponds with a different section of the manuscript and is represented by a Hexagram from each section.
So it is no wonder that the lyrical themes on this album deal with feelings of isolation, meditation, balance, travel, and Taoist wisdom; as the album itself was conceived in isolation due to the virus pandemic.
What we get in the end is something that can be called meditation hip-hop and Noveliss might be on to a new trend in the genre.
Noveliss & Dixon Hill – ‘Book of Changes’ Reaction
With 'Book Of Changes,' Noveliss might be on to something that can be called meditation hip-hop.