Corey and Taylor Wong are super siblings. The duo is also known as HMLT - a team hitting all the right notes when it comes to their creative approach and execution of a distinct sound.
They just launched their 3-track EP, Rumble In The 6ix. Mixed themselves and mastered by The 25th Hr, the album is a calling of arms to Toronto Asian artists to join together as a community in hopes of giving them a stronger voice in North American pop culture.
“We're just a couple of Chinese boys from Toronto who grew up watching Jackie Chan
and came to love hip-hop - always trying to break the myth of the model minority.” - HMLT
From live bands and church performances to street busking, Asian food festivals to dirty dive bars, the brothers have done it all. Corey and Taylor have seamlessly transformed into a live
electronic duo called HMLT (pronounced Hamlet), named after their father who passed in 2008.
Rumble In The 6ix is far from a fight between George Foreman and Mohammed Ali, or a Jackie Chan flick. In this case, the Wong brothers duke it out in their own Jungle (Toronto), while one cooks up beats and the other throws big punches on the mic. Then they swap roles. Then back again. This is why HMLT's approach is so magic; it's a wholly collaborative process founded on true partnership, bonded by blood and committed to the art.
The EP starts off with the bouncy groove and the brother's smooth signature vox combo on "Roses & Cigarettes" with verse samples a la Chance The Rapper and nods to Amine. It's a romantic, fun, track of glorious chords and sharp wit.
"Mary" screams adolescent angst and bold confidence as Taylor sings, "do you wanna be my boo?" The track is forthcoming in tone with its groovy keys and hip-hop demeanour. The EP closes with classic HMLT on "nofx." Not inspired by the punk band, but echoing Toronto sounds and the duo's unique flair and approach on production, "nofx" is a punk track in its own right with rebellious hooks and chorus: "i don't need your opinions / don't care about what you say / i do what i want to do / i don't really give a fuck about you." And if you've ever seen HMLT perform live, the composition of this track in itself is an indication that we're in for a real treat the next time they hit the stage.
Honouring their parents and their musical gifts, HMLT is a tribute to their father's sense of rhythm and their mother's voice and ear. Rumble In The 6ix is the next chapter in the books, marking the continued journey of their musical career.
Download Rumble In The 6ix
Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
Words by Ola Mazzuca