Milwaukee rapper IshDARR has been toying with his sound for years now. "I learned how to stop limiting myself to try new things and voice tones," he told Complex over email. "It's to the point now where if I want to do it all myself—rap, sing, produce, everything—I had no boundaries on this tape." Growing up in the Milwaukee scene has given him inspiration over the years, but he says, it's been progressing too slowly—with the exception of Webster X and Job Jetson. But today, it's his time to shine with the debut of his album, Old Soul Young Spirit.
Taking inspiration from Wu-Tang to TDE, Chance the Rapper, and more, IshDARR showcases seemingly effortless technical abilities over shimmering, soulful production throughout the full tape. His favorite song on the project, "For You," kicks things off with one of his most impressive songs to date, something he says came about naturally within minutes.
Stream the project below and read his track-by-track breakdown below:
"For You": This record is my favorite on the project. The title speaks for itself. My whole concept for this tape was creating a tape that everyone I know can listen to. It has no set audience. It's for you and everybody literally.
"Right Now": I remember writing this track a few weeks or so after just getting back from the Ab-Soul These Days tour. It was most definitely one of the best experiences of my life. That of course sparked some noise from the people around me, but wanted to let them know I had to stay focused on the here and now.
"Only You": I ask that everyone learns these lyrics. It was on the plane to Cali actually for the first time that I wrote this. I wanted to write music on the plane, but was like dang no laptop, no WiFi, nothing but the beats on my phone. It's about a dream girl I envisioned back then.
"Vibe": This track hit home for me soon as I heard the beat. It's smooth and gets my energy going when it snaps in. Most definitely was vibing the hell out while in the studio recording this.
"Overdue Interlude": Shouts my boy Canis Major. One of my favorite producers due to the time we built. This track is a long statement basically. I kind of let it all out on this interlude. For my family, the city, and just about me personally.
"SquadTwo.0": A part two of the original Squad from The Better Life EP. This was most def for my Squad homies worldwide. Mad I didn't get to shoutout them all, but they know who they are regardless if names are said.
"Its Like": Once I heard the beat....I said F it, I'm about to go in. Wanted to address how it is "making it out." It's like everyone is trying to do it, but only for themselves. It's a way we can do it all at the same time.
"Too Bad": If you have any sort of ..... when this comes on, SPARK UP. Most definitely lives up to its name. My party, turn-up song on the tape. I loved the energy of the beat as soon as I heard it and went from there.
"Hol'UP" f/ Saba: Very real record for myself. I noticed many people trying to pull from my energy at the time of some important events in this past year. But it's like hold up, literally.... and of course Saba put the cherry on top. I thank him for that, being arguably my favorite Chicago artist was most definitely amazing.
"Remember": Let's just say she knows who it's for, hope she remembers too. She's been by my side this whole experience.
"Twelve": Police been wilding lately. All around the country, most def needs to stop. Just sharing my opinion on it, which I'm gonna always stand by the people/ my people. So like I said in the chorus......
"Still on It" f/ Tommy Boozewell: This track is the realest on the project. A lot of stuff was happening during this time in my life with my fam and wanted to just kind of let it out on this track. Shouts to my bro Tommy Boozewell for the flame verse as well.