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Torae & Pete Rock Cook Up New Song, ‘That Raw’ — Exclusive

Robert Adam Mayer

Stampeding out the gate thanks to collaborations with DJ Premier, 9th Wonder, Black Milk and the group album ‘Double Barrel’ with Marco Polo, Torae has already received a career’s worth of cosigns, but on his debut album, ‘For the Record,’ the Brooklyn rapper has muscled ahead of the pack, surpassing his considerable potential.

On the Pete Rock-helmed ‘That Raw,’ Tor flexes his lyrical dexterity and lethal wordplay effortlessly, as he does throughout his self-released debut, which also features production by legends new and old, including Large Professor, Diamond D, Nottz, 9th Wonder, Khrysis, and of course, Marco Polo and DJ Premier.

“Pete and I met at SiriusXM satellite radio back in 2007,” the Coney Island rep tells The BoomBox of his first meeting with the revered producer. “I introduced myself and he said ‘Torae, from the DJ Premier records?’ I was like, ‘Yup, one in the same.’ He said, ‘Man, I been looking for you!’ and from that moment it was on.”

Though ‘For the Record’ features some of the most respected beatsmiths in the game, Tor’s voice is the only one you’ll hear on his debut. His hunger is apparent — with each song he showcases a different strength, whether he’s painting an introspective portrait of his past, or simply kicking a dope verse, as he does on ‘That Raw.’

“As soon as I heard the track, the chorus came to me,” Tor explains. “It felt raw, like vintage Pete, so I just wanted to go in and deliver a banger. This being our first joint, I didn’t wanna go the story or introspective route — I just wanted to rap! Cocky, braggadocios rap, rap. Pete was all for it, and ‘That Raw’ was the outcome.”

Torae’s album, ‘For the Record,’ is in stores on Nov. 1.

Listen to Torae’s ‘That Raw,’ Produced by Pete Rock

Download Torae Songs | Buy Torae Albums

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