Verb T is a 42 year old MC from London, England starting out as a part of The 4 Owls. However, he’s also been carving a path of his own since 2006 putting out a dozen LPs & 5 EPs throughout that span of time. But when I found out that Vic Grimes was being brought in to produce T’s lucky 13th full-length album, it raised my expectations significantly to the point where The Tower Where the Phantom Lives could become my favorite solo effort of his.
“The Phantom Appeared” starts the LP fittingly by introducing us to the titular Phantom character over a dusty boom bap instrumental whereas “Tower With a View” ruggedly talks about the residential tower that this ghost resides in. “Inner Child” works in a dirty bass-line as well as kicks & snares detailing that you can’t believe in something that you pretend to be, but then “Very Superstitious” talks about this mythical feeling that T’s getting keeping it in boom bap turf.
On the other hand, “Fireworks & Flowers” hooks up these kicks & snares with vibraphones explaining the way he started & will end his career while “Forget Feelings” remains raw talking about walking with purpose. “I Guess?” is a piano/boom bap hybrid reminding everyone that you can’t make moves when you’re hands are tied while “The Invisible Fortress” describes the titular compound that happens to be unseen.
“New View” gives off a cloudy, boom bap edge to the beat visualizing a future that more secure continuing with a new story in his life while “4 Oh!” admitting that 4 decades of his life are on the horizon as he’s not ready over vibraphones, kicks & snares. “Your Heart Deserves” as a closer ties it all up by performing from a profound perspective.
As someone who’s been following this guy since my senior year of high school 8-9 years ago, The Tower Where the Phantom Lives certainly lived up to my expectations because I can firmly say that it’s the best that Verb T has sounded by himself. The conceptually has cohesively well-told & Vic Grimes couldn’t have been a better person to do the musical backings helping bring T’s story to life.