Premiere: Check Out The New Single From Team From Nowhere's KoolQuise.
Marquis Warren isn't a tough guy to stumble across. Spend even the slightest amount of time observing the Dallas hip-hop scene and you'll spot the guy who goes by the name KoolQuise.
He's most definitely out there. These days, the Dallas-born, Oak Cliff- and Tyler-raised, and currently Deep Ellum couch-dwelling performer can be most often seen on stage acting as the hype man for his fellow Team From Nowhere crew member -topic. But that's not to say that he's not a performer of his own merit: Since 2010, he's released three albums and a handful of singles to call his own, and, come May, he'll release another.
Called the Love Lost in Translation EP, the 26-year-old Warren teases this next project as a “thought-provoking” and “very jazzy” (his emphasis) release. But more than that, it's the culmination of and next step past what has already been an impressive 12-month stretch from TFN, a disc meant to further establish KoolQuise as a performer of his own merit.
“Musically, I've leveled up,” Warren says. “I'm no longer a master of one style of rap but now dabbling in many. My level of understanding has risen.”
One realm in which his knowledge has gained is on the promotions side of things. In advance of Love Lost in Translation's release, Warren will be releasing a string of “loosie” singles, each of meant to get some excitement going before the disc's arrival. You can check out the exclusive premiere of “Focus,” the first of these singles, below. The song finds KoolQuise performing lyrical gymnastics atop an intoxicating backpacker beat provided by Maryland producer Jomac. It's a short burst — the song's barely 90 seconds long — but it's a promising unveiling just the same. It's well worth the listen, as well as a surefire sign that KoolQuise is among the Dallas rappers to keep an eye upon in 2015 and beyond. Promises Warren, he's got plenty up his sleeve for that coming stretch.
“Expect more shows,” he says. “And more music.”
In other words: “Focus” is just the beginning.
Cover photo by Jonathan Stafford and edited by Michael Felder.