To simply refer to L'Orange as a rap producer would be a discredit to his craft. Whether he's collaborating with Topeka's Stik Figa or conducting a solo effort, L'Orange conceptualizes his output with a narrative. The patterns of love complicate the tableau of his latest release, The Orchid Days, and to a degree, his Friday Night mix is an extension of his meditations on love. Billie Holiday guides the listener through the dark side of unrequited love, through the murk of addictive love that a body can't shake. Though the selections on “A Smoking Withdrawal” are pulled from across L'Orange's many records and collaborations, the mix proves he's been leaving breadcrumbs to a narrative that's toiled through his subconscious for many moons.
The narrative of “A Smoking Withdrawal” suggests that not only is L'Orange a meticulous digger for bygone samples, but he's deeply invested in his own body work and has dissected himself like revisiting old journal entries in order to oneself better. He did not build this mix from his own material for self-serving, promotional means, but because he'd discovered a pattern worth sharing. “A Smoking WIthdrawal” is quite possibly catharsis for L'Orange, but it is also a worthy offering for any listener trying to dodge the blues before the summer.
L'Orange shared his inspiration for the mix below:
For my Friday mix, I picked songs that remind me of missing nicotine like ex girlfriends. My baby dances from the embers like a phoenix and circles like 1920s soft shoe tap. All songs from the prohibition era, these songs float overhead like restrictions and shots from blocks away remind us that we're still human. It features Billie Holiday, Rapsody, Mr. Lif, Castle and myself, plus an exclusive unreleased remix of “Get Flexi” by MindsOne.
L'Orange's The Orchid Days is out now on Mello Music Group.
“A Smoking Withdrawal” tracklisting:
Billie Holiday Intro
L'Orange – “Second Person” – The Orchid Days
L'Orange & Stik Figa – “Before Midnight feat. Rapsody (Billie Holiday Remix)” – The City Under The City
Billie Holiday – “Good Morning Heartache”
L'Orange – “We Call It Despair” – The Mad Writer
MindsOne – “Get Flexi (L'Orange Remix)”
L'Orange – “People Don't Fall, Leafs Do” (Unreleased)
L'Orange – “The Lost Nova” (feat. Mr. Lif) – Mandala Vol. 1
L'Orange – “Brick Walls & Blurry Faces” (feat. Castle) – Mandala Vol. 1
Billie Holiday Outro