Formed and fronted by classical trained Korean composer and pianist JooWan Kim, the Bay Area-based hip-hop collective Ensemble Mik Nawooj have received attention and praise from several media outlets including The Wall Street Journal, SF Weekly and East Bay Express for meshing classical compositions with hip-hop — in a fashion similar to Chilly Gonzales‘ The Unspeakable but pushing it forward with their unique takes on classic and beloved hip-hop.
The classical/hip-hop collective will be releasing a new full-length next year but their latest single is a gorgeous and cinematic take on J. Dilla‘s “The Last Donut of the Night” paired with the sort of lyricism reminiscent of Kanye West and Kendrick Lamar. The recently released video for “Last Donut” is a holiday-themed video shot in Austria featuring a misunderstood and lonely Krampus, who later joins a Krampus-themed parade.
But what I also wanted to call your attention to the act’s hard-hitting and conscious take on Wu-Tang Clan‘s classic and beloved “C.R.E.A.M,” which has the group’s emcee’s rhyming about police brutality and violence and other pertinent social issues in a take that sounds as though it drew influence from The Roots and others. Check that out below.