Detroit Rap Goes Down Under | “Heavy Organ” – The Leonard Simpson Duo


Neelan Bosnic, Writer/Volunteer

Experimental rap is, for lack of a better phrase, pretty sick nasty. Hearing sounds that you’ve never heard before made by people you’ve never heard of is one of life’s greatest pleasures. It’s especially cool when one of the people in said group is from your own state, and a legend in their own right. 

Legendary Detroit MC Guilty Simpson, known for his past collaborations with fellow Stones Throw records artists J Dilla and Madlib, has teamed up with veteran New Zealand psychedelic producer Leonard Charles to create something wholly unique. LSD, their first of two planned albums under the name The Leonard Simpson Duo, was released on Jan. 31.

Jeremy Toy, better known by his stage name Leonard Charles, is a multi-instrumentalist and producer who caught Simpson’s attention when he remade J Dilla’s groundbreaking final album Donuts using live instruments. Simpson was on tour in New Zealand in 2016, the two met up and worked on some tracks, and the rest is history.

Clocking in at a punchy three minutes, Guilty Simpson channels acid rock and African jazz samples to reminisce on his upbringing on Detroit’s 7 Mile Road as well as the sacrifices he’s made to succeed. The other featured rapper on the track, Wildchild, is another MC from Stones Throw.

Overall, this track is a great way to get your head bobbing and your feet stomping with a little more authority. If you enjoyed the song, be sure to listen to more of Guilty Simpson and Leonard Charles’ solo repertoire. It won’t disappoint.