Hawaii Hip Hop Artist Keanu “Ballistic” released his debut music project- Munky Mixtape on Datpiff in late August. Like many artists I’ve featured, I met Ballistic at Team Backpack’s MULA 2015. As a fellow Hawaii kid, it was inevitable that Ballistic and I Iinked up. As both an avid Hip Hop fan and participant, I love listening to mixtapes/albums front to back. I feel that artists put a lot of time and effort into full-length projects and that listeners should experience it as such. Ballistic definitely put a lot of heart and hardwork into Munky and it is a pleasure to feature him on this platform.
Opening with a Run DMC-styled track, “Munky” (the album’s name and the title of track 1) immediately shows off Ballistic’s youthful energy and homage to his old school influence. When conversing with Ballistic about his inspiration behind Munky, it was obvious that this young man is uniquely creative. Part comic, part skit-writer, and part rapper, all of these elements come together in Munky. “Munky was a project I had been working on for a little less than two years, independently. The cover art, mixing, mastering, and vocals were all recorded by me,” said Ballistic.
He first announced this mixtape back in the summer following MULA 2015 in a heartfelt-vibed video blog. Then, he followed it with a hella funny video of him dressed in a monkey suit while he scares tourists all over Waikiki. (Waikiki is sort of like the Hollywood Blvd of Hawaii.) In his own munky fashion, Ballistic jumped from trees, behind bushes, and even did some breakdancing moves. Just go watch it! Lol.
“Munky Mixtape” is available for free streaming and download via Datpiff. The tape includes original and remix tracks and overall showcases Ballistic’s lyrical skill and style. As an up and coming Youtuber, he has shared consistent content on his channel for about 4 years. Currently, Ballistic sports 7,000+ subscribers, 800,000+ views, and has already gotten some looks from MTV and other sponsors. Staying true to his passions, “I plan to pursue a career in music and acting, even if it means only working at Tower Records or doing commercials for GoodWill.” At the end of the day, Ballistic just wants people to feel good about themselves and open up to the “Munky” in all of us. Check out Ballistic's Munky Mixtape here!
Jehzan: What is your personal favorite track off your Munky Mixtape?
Ballistic: It would have to be "Stay High" because it's a very personal and emotional song for me. Like many songs, it was inspired by a breakup. One day I was listening to Tove Lo's "Habits" (Stay High) - Hipper Sabotage Remix, and the words poured out of me. I think that a lot of people will be able to relate to this song whether it be about losing a special someone or even a family member or friend. I like where this song takes me.
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OTDHipHop is an independent music blog and network, curated by Rapper/Blogger Jehzan Exclusive.