Free Album Download: The Pharmers Guide to Higher Ground

Shot by Kevin Cayuca


The Pharmer’s Guide to Higher Ground is a hip-hop project conceptualized by MC’s Liquid, Skarm, Flexx and Lloyd. In this age where visual illustrations and juxtaposed figures of speech maintain a certain vital role in crafting modern underground hip-hop music, the Pharm introduce themselves as such group utilizing these elements. The 14-track album is a sketchpad of lyrical approaches stylized by each member’s own characteristics in spitting out mind-trip bars that reveal their own animated worlds, cryptic messages and bizarre thoughts. Backed up by hazardous headnod beats from 3 of the Pharm’s members (along with production from producers, Ill Primitivo and DJ Fresh-Lee) and surreal album art designed by abstract visual artist Sloj, this album promises a rejuvenating feeling in Philippine underground hip-hop; simply put, it is something fresh and relevant to look forward to. New Perspectives is here to introduce new gutter science for essential underground listeners in 2012. Meet..The Pharm.


Truth in Essence: Skarm

Sometimes the best way to know about an artist is to ask; simple as it may sound, not all of us get an opportunity to do so.  Consider us a part of the chosen few.  In this clip,  Skarm opens up on his influences, The Pharm, and the state of Hip-Hop.   Listen to the essence, absorb the ingenuity, and applaud the music.

Album Review: Skarm, “Odyssey to the Sun LP”

Upon first listen, Skarm sounds like he is in a recurring nightmare.  The stories are vivid, personal and keep him restless.  Staying at midtempo with a sprinkle of gloomy piano keys on the side, The Pharm‘s CEO and founder is back with his follow-up to last year’s In Troubled WatersOdyssey to the Sun, his third full-length LP, is a combination of bass-heavy, carefully crafted beats and lyrical deliveries that echo the confidence of an emcee that’s been in the business for years.

Finding highlights for balanced albums such as Odyssey … can be a little tricky since the whole album is more fulfilling than the sum of its parts.  The ones that really warrant multiple listens for its clever wordplay and storytelling are “Aviator Traits” and “The Other Side”.  It would be a mistake to sleep on the rest of the tracks, though.

Skarm may still be swimming in troubled waters, but this hasn’t stunted his growth both as a producer and emcee.  There’s a lot to like in this album, and all 12 tracks breeze by so fast it leaves us wanting to hear a bit more.  The production is layered with samples both simple and sparse, a good thing as the beats don’t overwhelm his narratives.  Odyssey to the Sun, like its predecessors, is an album to listen and nod your head to.  Pick this one up when you can.

“Subconscious Shades” (Live @ Subflex, November 2)

(Email for a copy of Odyssey to the Sun/Introubled Waters/Lazy Boy Blues.  Delivers anywhere nationwide.)

Subflex @ B-Side, November 2: Sights and Sounds

Another lethal dose of Hip-Hop music last Wednesday night at B-Side as this Subflex event showcased the some of the country’s most progressive personalities and ensembles.  The night featured performances by Miscellaneous, Skarm (with Lloyd from the Pharm), Protege, MDK, members of the Fliptop Battle League and the rest of the Ampon crew as well as sets from Caliph8 and Pasta Groove, among others.  Here are a few photos to give you an idea of how the night went:

For more photos from this wonderful night of tight beats and improvisations, you can check out our Facebook page.  As an added bonus, we’re also sharing with you audio snippets from some of the artists that performed that night.  Just click on the link at the bottom of the page.  We hope to see you at the next SubFlex event, happening next month at the same venue!