Kevin Cossom is an up and coming RnB singer who can rap, a little, but the rapping really isn’t what he is known for, then again neither is the singing. Kevin Cossom is one of the premier songwriters in the RnB sub culture. He has written songs for Chris Brown, Drake, Kerry Hilson, John Legend, Jeremiah, Mary J. Blige, Trey Songz, Usher and Mario and has had countless features, which is where I first heard Kevin Cossom. The first time I heard Kevin Cossom was on the Pusha-T track ‘Feeling Myself’. After hearing the impressive hook that he sang on that track, I was in search of more music by this unknown artist. Being the music fiend that I am, I headed straight to the web searching and a few days later I found a mixtape with 12 tracks. The mixtape was called ‘By Any Means’ and after downloading the mixtape and listening to it for a couple days it was heavy in rotation.
At first, without knowing that he was an accomplished song writer, I was impressed by a great deal of the songs on his mixtape. Many of the songs were covers and despite this fact, they were better takes on the original songs. He took the summer banger, Ciara’s ‘Ride’ and made it even better. Making it into a sexual thriller coupled with a famous skit from “Boys ‘n the Hood” as the intro. Also adding wittier lines into the track than Ciara could ever, while keeping the same feel in the track. With that one track Kevin had me impressed. Another track that was more than impressive was the cover of Whiz Khalifa’s ‘Black and Yellow’. He took the hook and developed it into a spectacular love song. The original Whiz Khalifa song was more popular for it’s production than for its value as a song; the Kevin Cossom version of the song is a marvel of song writing. The original songs on the mixtape also hold their own; they have such a swagger that you can’t help but believe what he says combined with how smooth he sings every note. He paints himself as the perfect ladies man and in the manner that he does it you cant blame him for making such a claim.
I was so satisfied by his first tape that I spent the next year waiting for his next one. Bridge vs. Hook 2 was well worth the wait. Kevin came with ten songs of smooth RnB, bravado and pure sexuality. Bridge vs. Hook 2 was even better than the previous release ‘By Any Means’. This album was filled with smoother RnB tracks, with no trace of hip-hop at all. The singing and the song writing had been taken the next level. There was less swagger in his voice, but he was definitely more confident in his singing. The productions on this mixtape were a lot tighter than the previous with a different feel that gave you a sense of being in Miami. Overall this mixtape was much more complete. Bridge vs. Hook 2 has a couple more signature songs on it and also it’s a much easier listen. Easily seven out of the ten songs on this album are above average, with five of the ten songs being excellent tracks.
The must listen too songs would have to be ‘Anticipation’, which is the best songs on the mixtape, maybe not by far but it’s a treat. It feels like one of those old usher songs from earlier on his career. Once you’ve heard this song, I am sure you will become a fan of Kevin, but I cannot stop there. ‘Things People Do’ would easily be the next best song on the mixtape. Simply said, this song speaks of the things that people will do for sex, and which lengths we will go too to get what we desire. ‘Motivated’ would be the next best track that Kevin gives us; this song just proves how shallow a lot of us are, if not all of us have been at one point. It is a song about chasing beauty, regardless of the compatibility, we force ourselves to make it work. ‘Vegas Love’ is the second track that you hear once you start Bridge vs. Hook 2, it is a baby maker that’s all that I can say. It’s so smooth with the perfect mix of style and perfect execution; he starts the album off like R.Kelly used to.
In my opinion, Bridge vs. Hook 2 is the best RnB release thus far for 2012 albums or mixtapes. The one release that I believe could compare to this is Frank Ocean’s Channel Orange and I believe that Kevin Cossom’s Bridge vs. Hook 2 is a far superior release. The song writing on Bridge vs. Hook 2 is by far better, the continuity is there and the productions are better as well. Creating a better overall product than Frank Ocean was able to provide while living up to the standard of previous work even though buzz wasn’t as much. Kevin Cossom is a force to be reckoned with.
- Jason Williams