Smash Brovaz Solidify Their Spot In The Game
Birthday boy Junia-T, one-half of the Smash Brovaz duo, shines bright at the album release party for Think It’s A Game at Toronto’s Revival nightclub. “I think this is the first time I ever really wanted something special,” says Junia-T. “I didn’t know what it was going to be, I just knew that I wanted to do something on my birthday.”
Rich Kidd hosted the event, which featured a lot of familiar faces to the Toronto hip-hop scene, as it was Smash Brovaz’s turn to be embraced. Beat-boxing great Scott Jackson opened up before the duo took the stage performing some of the tracks off their album.
Crooklin, the other half of the group, felt the love the crowd gave back to them. When on stage he said, “It’s all family in here man,” as he passed out countless shots of Hennessy to anybody who wanted some.
“It was us going through time and learning and understanding why we make this music.” – Junia-T
Hands were waving left and right while people chanted Smash Brovaz, during their performance, which is everything the two emcees could have asked for out of their night. “It’s been a long time coming, building the whole vibe, and just to see that the city actually came by and responded to our call is the biggest blessing of it all,” said Junia.
Think It’s A Game features several tracks Junia-T produced himself and also a few collaborations they put together with emcees like Rich Kidd and Richie Sosa. Sosa got on the song called “The Kitchen” simply because he was in the studio while they were recording and felt the need to do a verse.
As one can expect, there were some difficulties they had to overcome to come out with such a project. “Encountering life challenges and dealing with them in a manner where your goal in life was the reason to keep you on path with your goals, because life will always throw a curve at you,” explained Junia, who recently became a father and had to figure out how to juggle the different aspects of his life and still find room for success.
Everyone who came to the event clearly did for the love of the music and Smash Brovaz. Carlos, a resident of the city’s west-end, was more than happy to show his support for the duo. “I thought it was real live,” he said. “I’m always into supporting indie hip-hop. I’ve heard a lot about these dudes and I came here to support them.”
If Junia-T could describe the album in one word, the word would be experience. “You can make it a noun or a verb. That’s all it was. It was us going through time and learning and understanding why we make this music,” he said. “Once we can truly understand then it’s easy to stand firm and plead your case, because you understand what you believe in.”
Words By. Shakiyl Cox + Photos By. Samantha O’Connor