Ed. Note: 7/12/21: ‘Time Lapse’ officially drops on Wednesday, July 14th. I was blessed with an advanced copy of the EP via Soundcloud. Support the official release.
21-year-old Baltimore artist NAE hit my line recently to introduce his ‘Time Lapse’ project. The way he went about it showed his humble nature, as the email reminded me of who he was in relation to why I should check his music out (again, since I checked out his January tape ‘New Beginnings’ on a recommendation, though I didn’t write about it on SOTB). I’ll be completely honest: I didn’t know what to expect when I got into ‘Time Lapse,’ but I’m glad I checked it out. A four-track EP, it somewhat serves as the sequel to ‘New Beginnings,’ but also showcases a growth from that project. Lyrically, NAE is in his bag, dropping fire bars over a mix of lo-fi and soulful production. Subject-wise, he bounces crisply between braggy bars and introspection, sometimes within the same bar.
On Twitter, NAE mentioned that July is one of his toughest months to stomach because of some situations that arose during this month. I feel that this project acts as his therapy in some ways, getting out the feelings of self-doubt while also promoting his own brand of positivity. All in all, the project was over too soon and it left me wanting more from him. So, I did what any self-respecting journalist/purveyor of dope music would do: I revisited ‘New Beginnings.’ That project still holds up six months later–which means a lot in an age where music has become as instant and disposable as a Kodak in the ’90s. If you’re like me and want the full experience, listen to ‘New Beginnings’ first, then dive face–and ears–first into ‘Time Lapse.’ It’ll help you fully understand the man NAE is, the man he was and that man he hopes to become through his music and throughout the rest of his life.
Music has the ability to hurt, but more often than not, it has the ability to heal. NAE’s done some heavy lifting in these songs, even if it seems as if he’s waxing poetic about his life every so often. Check out the project when it drops, the video for the project later today (Ed. Note: the above YouTube link should be live after this piece premieres on SOTB) and remember to both support dope music in all its forms and be kind to your fellow creatives and support them not just through a stream (if possible). Sometimes, they’re going through struggles that you may not know because they’re creative in hiding their pain(s).