Free Radio, the Asheville-based hip-hop collective featuring forever friends Austn Haynes and Johnny Reynolds, returns with “Outer Limits” featuring new band members including Grammy-winning singer Debrissa McKinney and rising powerhouse soul vocalist Datrian Johnson.
Check out the hard-hitting single and video from “Outer Limits (below) that flaunts an effortless freestyle flow with poignant harmonic vocals both in the front & back. Free Radio is spreading their colorful chops from North Carolina’s mountain territory, combining the enigmatic musical shades of Fantastic Negrito, The Roots, and Black Pumas.
Formed in 2012, the new configuration of Free Radio represents a massive evolution of intention and sound. “I feel like the universe put us together” says Reynolds. “We all came from different walks of life and found ourselves in this time and space.” The new singers create a new crossover dynamic, pushing Free Radio into a fresh sonic space while retaining the vibe that has earned the band numerous “best hip-hop” awards. “When Datrian and Debrissa come together it’s just magical” continues Haynes. “One thing Johnny and I are not as skilled at is being vulnerable, and to have them bring that balance and soulfulness, to bring it back to a heartfelt level, I’ve been manifesting that for years.”
Free Radio has also been collaborating with fellow Asheville outfit Saint Disruption featuring local healer Jeff Firewalker Schmitt and John Medeski (Medeski Martin & Wood), which delivered its debut Rose in the Oblivion earlier this month to great acclaim. Check out Glide’s recent review here.
Free Radio’s new album Earthworms is due May 27 on Root Doctor Collective. The band will celebrate with an Album Release Show at famed Asheville venue The Orange Peel on May 29, tickets for the concert are available here.