Ric Wilson’s latest EP couldn’t have been more aptly titled. Soul Bouce stands as the Chicago native’s most daring release to date. It’s an espresso shot of self-confidence infused with soul and the intricate lyricism that’s become an essential part of Wilson’s signature sound.
Channelling his inner Muhammed Ali on standout track, “Butterfly,” Wilson breezes through a jazzy beat supplied by James Gent. “I used to rap like Kendrick Lamar until I realized that Kendrick wasn’t me,” he declares. As the song continues, Wilson demonstrates exactly who he is. He shines his light on Southside Chicago, getting listeners up close and personal with his reality. Despite rapping about serious issues like police brutality and its impact on his community, Wilson maintains a positive attitude.
This positivity vibrates through every song on Soul Bounce. Incorporating a roster of other local artists like David Ellis and Daryn Alexus on “We Love Us,” the project sounds like a big block party with each guest adding their own style.
Wilson brought Soul Bounce to the stage this past weekend at North Coast Music Festival. It’s a spot he had to fight for after festival organizers did not think his music would jive well with the other artists on the lineup. In the end, his core fans and other festival-goers flocked to the Skyline Stage on Saturday afternoon. The whole crowd bounced along, rallying behind a local artist who wants his story to be heard.