Sareem Poems’ first project with Illect Recordings, Beautiful Noise, may not have happened if it wasn’t for the label.

“I thought I was done,” the LA Symphony member formerly known as Sharlok Poems said.

If Sareem Poems continued to release music, he wanted it to be with people who understand the music market. As Illect’s artist A&R, and long-time friends with Illect owner Josh Niemyjski, he knew that it did.

“We have nearly identical goals and expectations,” Niemyjski said. “We’re willing to allow a great level of artistic freedom for the artists we partner with at Illect. … We’ve chosen a particular path to promote our art and that’s attractive to a certain subset of hip-hop artists, like Sareem Poems. We’ve been friends for about 15 years and worked together on a few things in the past. It was a natural progression.”

‘Beautiful Noise’

Noise is an unseen and shapeless entity that primarily exists to our ears. Sareem Poems’ Beautiful Noise, which drops on Tuesday, captures this on a deeper level, penetrating not only ears but hearts with soulful lyrics and matching production.

“Sounds, like feelings, don’t have a physical visual, but there’s beauty in that,” the rapper said. “I feel the project and the artwork captured what sound can really be, which is beautiful and shapeless.”

Noise is defined as a disturbance, especially one that is loud and unpleasant to the ears. Sareem Poems said Beautiful Noise, is more than just another unpleasant sound in a world full of them.

“Many people consider hip hop and rap to just be another noise,” the rapper said. “Beautiful Noise is a message that makes listeners think.”

Sareem Poems found inspiration for Beautiful Noise through music popular to younger generations.

“I work with the youth in my area, and I’ve been researching the music these kids are exposed to daily,” he said. “A lot of popular music is about doing you and getting as much as you can for yourself.”

Hip hop was not always a self-serving culture, Sareem Poems said. On the single “We,” the rapper addresses these issues in popular music, and specifically hip hop.

“Hip hop’s origin is about building up others as a community,” he said. “Hip hop doesn’t have to be self-centered, and all about glorifying yourself.”

Sareem Poems’ decided to work exclusively with producer Shondell “Ess Be” Brandon based off both a broad background in music production and location convenience.

“Ess Be has a good cohesive body of work, a broad range and background in music production,” Sareem Poems said. “I’m also showcasing some of the local talent here in Lansing, Michigan.”

Ess Be’s broad background in music production comes from influences in different genres of music.

“My production is a product of where I’m from,” he said. “Lansing (Michigan) is a diverse city, and my production is just as diverse. I produce from the heart and translate that into musical notes.”

Sareem Poems was appreciative of Ess Be’s work on the project, which — in addition to Illect — also motivated him to extend his career.

“Stay tuned for what Ess Be will continue to do,” the rapper said. “He’s consistently creating, and he inspires me to write more.”

Buy Beautiful Noise on iTunes.