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Not too many artists can claim that their debut project is a classic. Portland’s own Aviel, however, has accomplished this feat with the release of his mixtape, The Prequel. Showcasing a wide range of styles, Aviel effortlessly switches between punchline-driven tracks (such as “Off The Meter” and “Holy Water”) and more introspective songs (“3 o’clock” and “Boss”). The Portland artist even manages to show off his singing abilities on “These Girls” with a sound reminiscent of a Drake-The Weeknd hybrid.
One of the project’s highlight’s is “Portland Lights,” an anthem for Aviel’s hometown that has been accompanied by a hit-video directed by Packard Browne. To top of this already enthralling mixtape is the star-studded list of features that add to The Prequel’s overall dopeness. Features from Exzak, Packard Brown, HG, JR, and the show-stealing Angelynn display Aviel’s desire to incorporate Portland’s local talent into his vision. As if that wasn’t enough, however, Aviel acquired a featured from Funk Volume artist Dizzy Wright, whom delivered a scorching sixteen on the track “Nauseous” over an eerie banger produced by Packard Browne and Crook Cobain.
Clearly, “The Prequel” is an appropriate title for this project, as Aviel has laid the foundation for his own success. This project serves as a mission statement of Aviel’s determination to take over the rap game. If this mixtape is any indication of his future, then the sky, as the tape’s intro states, is truly the limit.