Region can at times means as much to an art as its genre, so when one listens to eight-piece hip-hop/jazz group Monkier, Atlanta clearly comes to mind. The collective led by saxophonist, keyboardist, and emcee Zac Evans is reminiscent in vibe to some of Nicholas Payton's recent work (without the offputting rhetoric). It's cool and inspired like it's fresh from Atlanta's Castleberry Hill. The horns swing, the rhythm section is on point, the music swells in just the right times, and Evans has lyrical chops while keeping a good balance between his rapping and the rest of the music. The Kennesaw State alums worked diligently to meld the hip hop they love with the jazz they were playing while still in school, and they've pulled off the mix in spades. In essence, Monkier is a strong debut album that's definitely worth checking out at their SoundCloud and Bandcamp pages.