In these turbulent, torrid times, imagine finding, in a corner gathering dust, a book: A Field Guide On How To Escape. Such an imagined discovery was the starting point for ‘The Escapist Handbook’, a 15 track tribute to escapism in it’s many forms by UK-born, French resident Apocraphe.
Hip hop that crisscrosses the culture, this album ranges from the drill-like intro of Many Lives (Bury My Dead) produced by two times gold disc French producer I.N.C.H, through the dark steampunk twists of City Of Lost Children, to the melodious jazz of The Song Of Tartarus. Even within the Golden Era vibes of the titular The Escapist Handbook, the culture is simultaneously represented and deconstructed.
Drawing heavily on mythology and classical literature as well as modern cultural touchstones, a journey is created, both in the mind of the listener, and the path of the album itself.
International superproducer Nat Powers (Snoop Dogg, Run DMC, Spice 1, Professor Green, Lomepal, etc) holds down a quarter of the album, alongside stalwarts such as I.N.C.H, Dezordre (CMF records), Louis Angeles (Naiad) and Arthur Guyard (Kilotone) with new talent such as Dakota and Thomas Nollet adding to the freshness. Features include but are not limited to Jahnell (a.k.a Johny Pitts, broadcaster and multi-award winning author of Afropean: Notes from Black Europe),
UK legends Scor-zay-zee and Sonnyjim (Conway The Machine/Verbal Kent/Iron Wigs and many more), PR Live Music Laureate 2021 artiste Dirtsa, and Spanish lyricist Dax Santos.
The album also includes an unreleased bonus track originally from 2014, remixed and remastered, the sole track ever made featuring the entire 10 members of the Parisian L’Affaire crew, including multi-platinum artist Lomepal.
The album stands as a product of the links and love of the artform shared across all international borders.