Premiere: “Dreamcatcher” by Down 2 Earth, Featuring Iamsu!

The burgeoning rap crew might just be the next big thing to come out of the Bay.

Hip-hop is like ice cream. While you’ve got classic flavors like chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla, there’s no shortage of inventive new additions, like chocolate-chip cookie dough, birthday cake, and mocha almond fudge. It’s the same with hip-hop. There’s so many subgenres now that it can be dizzying trying to keep up with all of them.

As for me, well, I’m more of a classic girl, in terms of both ice cream and hip-hop. I’ll take vanilla over chunky monkey any day, and the same goes for how I like my rap.

If you’re with me on this, then you’ll go ga-ga for Down 2 Earth‘s new single, “Dreamcatcher.” The Bay Area trio — consisting of Clyde Shankle, Dayvid Michael, and HBK Gang member Azure — crafts straight-up, on-the-rocks rap ditties, sans all the extra calories and doodads that proliferate in most songs these days.


“You don’t always want to hear some semi-conscious ni*** preaching at you from the inside of your speakers,” Michael says. “Nine times out of 10, people just want a good vibe, and that’s where we come in.”

“Dreamcatcher,” the crew’s second official single that will be on their upcoming debut album Fair Share, is a rock-steady number about maintaining hope and being honest with yourself. It features interlacing vocals from each of the three members, including the rapper Iamsu!, who — for possibly the first time ever! — sings on the track.

In fact, Iamsu! gets a lot of credit from Down 2 Earth, not only for bringing the aforementioned silky vocals to “Dreamcatcher,” but for giving the trio their first big break back in July 2013, when they appeared on the track “Down 2 Earth” in the deluxe edition of ‘Su’s album Kilt II.

With its simplistic, trickly piano melody, the vocals in “Dreamcatcher” shine bright like diamonds, which is surprising given the technical difficulties the crew had when laying down the track, especially Iamsu!’s vocals.

“The headphones had been disconnected in the booth and Su kept saying he couldn’t hear the beat,” says Azure, whom we profiled in January 2016. “Instead of realizing the headphones weren’t plugged in, he recorded over the near-silent beat he was hearing through the glass and somehow still nailed it. Wizard!”

Wizard, indeed.

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