Back in March, we featured hip-hop fusion band iLLPHONiCS in one of our Under the Radar posts. Since then, the band has been hard at work putting together what promises to be an amazing album. Just yesterday, iLLPHONiCS dropped “The Brown Frequency,” a track that was meant for the album but was too important to hold onto.

For some, the killing of Michael Brown last August may seem like history. But for iLLPHONiCS and the people of their hometown of St. Louis, Michael Brown’s death and the ensuing unrest is on everyone’s mind every single day. Brown’s death is a stark reminder of one of the cruelest ironies that plagues this country: Even though we have come so far and advanced so much over the years, we still have such a long way to go before we can claim to have a society built on equality.

There isn’t much to say about a song that speaks for itself, so I will only say this: Read Larry’s message that goes with the song. Listen carefully to the lyrics, and think about them with an open mind. Stand up against injustice and stand up for what is right. Stand up for justice and equality everywhere.

You can pick this track up on Bandcamp and name your price. All donations go to the Organization for Black Struggle.

If you live in Saint Louis, the death of Mike Brown on August 9th, 2014, has in some way impacted your daily life. For us in iLLPHONiCS, we are no exception. Members of our band have in many ways, both big and small, individually and collectively, contributed to the efforts to see a change in the unfair policing of minority communities in our city and to bring to light the lack of resources/education available to those who are less fortunate.

As everything transpired last year, the last thing on our minds was making music about the events, as taking care of home and contributing directly in Ferguson was more pertinent than any song we could write. In fact, I personally didn’t want to write a song about it, because I was too immersed in emotions. I simply didn’t know where to start. As time went along, I eventually felt confident to express exactly how I felt. It just so happened that we as a band were writing music for a new album, and all the puzzle pieces fell into place.

“The Brown Frequency” is a song that was intended to come out on our album, which is slated for release next year. However, we made a decision that with all that’s taking place in our country in the fight for police reform, this song is more appropriate than ever. We hope that for those fighting for change, this song pushes them to continue doing so. Though perhaps more importantly, we hope it can give some perspective to those who can’t understand the importance of this movement.

We have a long way to travel on the path to change and complete police accountability, but iLLPHONiCS has always been on the bleeding edge, expressing our artistry through sound. It’s our responsibility as influential members of society to inspire change, and we in iLLPHONiCS take this to heart.

I say on behalf of my brothers in the band—Keith, Kevin, Chaz, and Simon—keep fighting, y’all! We will win!

Much love,

Larry Morris