From Syracuse to the west coast, songwriter, recording/mixing engineer, and hip-hip artist International Mack smacks the rap scene with his conceptual and heavy-hitting 10-track album, 'The Wisdom.'
Born Edwin M. Hernandez, International Mack first learned his way around bass guitar and piano at an early age. After picking up beat-making and DJ skills, he ventured out west to obtain a Bachelor's Degree in Audio Production and create his own indie record label, Mack Attack Productions.
International Mack is ready to level up and take his career one step further with a new diary-esque 10-track album, 'The Wisdom.'
Hopping into the record, we're greeted with the introductory and title track, "The Wisdom." This track brightly opens with transcendent and melodic production while International Mack floods our speakers with the wisdom he's obtained after years in the music scene. Shutting it down left and right, International Mack continues ramping up the energy while his groovy sonics pump in the background for one hell of an album opener.
Keeping the confidence and energy alive is track number two, "Hundred Stacks," which opens with a fiery woodwind sample, driving drum breaks, and International Mack's charismatic flow. He takes this track to relish his success and how far he's come; sort of an anthem for evolving and making your first "Hundred Stacks." We love the authority International Mack brings to this track; he's made the listening experience exhilarating thus far.
Moving into the third track, "No Pressure," this tune features the heavenly vocal stylings of Alonda Rich, who serenades us with the sweetest vocals right off the bat. As the jazzy production begins melting through our speakers, International Mack jumps into his bars and tackles themes that make it seem like he was born for this cut-throat industry. We love this track's confidence and sweet-sounding vibe; it keeps the album moving with energy and determination.
The fourth track, "Loft Conversations," opens with a vocal sample-heavy and Drake-like beat that chills the body in an instant. International Mack's smooth and attention-commanding flow seeps through our speakers while touching on reaching your dreams and doing whatever it takes to level up. This song is incredibly easy to listen to, from the relaxed production to International Mack's empowering bars; he leaves us in a trance.
Turning down the vibes is track number five, "Levels 2," alongside the sweet and harmonious vocals of Fedarro, who opens the song with his sugar-coated vocals that sing of reaching a new level. International Mack rolls in with a cool, calm, and collected manner while discussing his vision and those who didn't see it clearly. We adore how International Mack uses this track to pay tribute to those level-up moments and reaching a higher-end lifestyle after some intense gruntwork.
Heating the scene is the album's sixth track, "B.A.R.S. Freestyle," which opens with dreamy and transcendent production and rolls into a groovy and soulful hip-hop beat. As International Mack begins freestyling his heart out, he takes the track by storm and discusses the importance of keeping it real, keeping the haters on their toes, and the determination he brings to each creation. International Mack's freestyle is wildly impressive; he brings so much poise and confidence that's truly invigorating.
Jumping into track seven, "Hip Hop Saviour," this anthemic and chilling track kicks off with dreamy production and the sweetest vocals samples that roll into the first verse. As International Mack expresses how hip hop saved him, he hopes that others will find peace in his own hip-hop music. We're sure listeners will appreciate such an inspiring ode to the hip-hop genre, especially coming from an artist who knows the scene like the back of his hand.
Reaching the album's lush eighth track, "Roses," this tune features the warm vocal stylings of Lakeith Rashad, who serenades us with his tender and soothing vocals to kick the song into gear. As International Mack tackles the first verse, he expresses themes of leveling up and watching how much he's evolved from the days in Syracuse to his present-day on the west coast. This is such a soulful and reflective track; it truly helps us understand International Mack's motives, hopes, and desires that much more.
Onto track number nine, "Legacy," we're met with a haunting vocal sample that moves into the song's first verse with the smoothest vibes. As International Mack makes his heated way in, he raps about not being completely understood and being one step ahead of the modern hip-hop game. On the hook, the bright and vibrant vocals of Mike Blanco float through our speakers while singing of how far he's come despite the haters telling him to change. This is another inspiring track that leaves us itching to achieve our desires.
Landing on the album's tenth and outro track, "Angels," this sweet single features the heavy-hitting bars of Eddie Jayy and the chilling vocals of Malaya Santos. As International Mack tackles the first verse, he raps necessary themes like spreading more love and erasing hate in our lives. Santos' fluttery and smooth vocals cover a similar theme of missing those we love most. Jayy takes the second verse by storm and expresses his loneliness as a leader and knowing that the man upstairs has a plan in store for him. This was an amazing way to close such a conceptual album, and we couldn't have asked for a more authentic and passionate way to head out.
Take a ride into the conceptual, heartfelt, and empowering 10-track album that is International Mack's 'The Wisdom,' now available on all digital streaming platforms.
Welcome to Buzzusic, International Mack. We're truly impressed with the themes and concepts within your recent album, 'The Wisdom.' How does this album differ from your 2020 record 'The Knowledge?'
In my opinion, The Wisdom shows my evolution as an artist and my growth as a human being. Much like a sequel to a movie, this album picks up from where I left off, except much more self-aware and meaningful this time around. Similar to The Knowledge, the first half of the project starts with a slick braggadocios tone but transitions into more of a heartfelt & self-conscious theme.
What inspired the creation of your soulful and heartfelt record, 'The Wisdom?' What led you to create it?
The inspiration definitely came from self-reflection over the years. All the moments and situations that have happened in my life have led me to this point, so I decided to take all of those thoughts & conceptualize them into a project. All of my music is based on true events, so even though I’m touching on personal things, I still tried to find a way to make it feel relatable at the same time.
What was it like collaborating with the many artists on 'The Wisdom?' Do you feel they helped make the album complete?
I don’t think this project would be the same without the collaborations, to be honest. I didn’t have many features on my songs in the past, but I’m glad I was able to work with all these talented artists, musicians, & producers. They definitely helped bridge the gap from Hip Hop to R&B and added even more soul to this record.
Which song from 'The Wisdom' is the most personal to you and why?
It would probably be biased of me to answer that since I have a few, but the one song everyone seems to gravitate towards the most is “Hip Hop Savior”. I’d say it’s between that and “Angels,” which is dedicated to all my family members that have passed away.
What was your goal with 'The Wisdom?' What message did you hope listeners take away from the overall experience?
A wise man once said that smart people learn from their own mistakes, but wise people learn from the mistakes of others. They also say that art imitates life, so hopefully, this album sheds light on your path and inspires you to become a better version of yourself in your journey.