It’s Thursday, you know what that means. Besides a new Thursday Night Football game, I’m putting this week’s SOTBMusic Quickies out early because Friday is Christmas Eve and I’m sure I’ll have more pressing issues than to discuss music. Now, don’t get me wrong. SOTB helps pay the bills and I love you all, but it’s not the only thing I have going on in December–especially with two kids and friends. So, with that in mind, let’s get into this week’s Quickies. There may be some more pieces between now and Monday (read: something tomorrow morning), but Saturday is a definite no-go.
Punk Adams – “Boo”
With a vocal range that reminds me of a mix between Anderson.Paak and early Chris Brown (back when he was poplocking with the lisp), Brooklyn/LA artist Punk Adams delivers a sexy banger that details how he’s going to approach a special someone, fears of rejection be damned. It’s a playful track, one that made me take notice from the jump because of its instrumentation. Once the vocals take form, though, we’re just given a complete song, one that’s equally about exuding self-confidence and about pursuing your “boo.” Play this one around that special someone, swallow your self-doubt and maybe they’ll melt like chocolate in your hand.
Media Arts Geniuses – “Better Dayz”
Sonically, this one reminds me of a mix between “Pound Cake,” a Nip track and Blu’s Below the Heavens. It could be the emphatic chorus, it could be the boombappy beat, it could just be the “we’re gonna make it” energies I get on this one. Whatever it is, it’s one of those tracks that reminds me of my days as J dot Speed, even though I wasn’t part of the Undergrounduates group at UMD. That’s also because of the feelgood message attached to this song.
TiDUS – “ALRIGHT”
This is what’d happen if you mixed Summer Walker with Bryson Tiller. The production is dreamy, the lyricism is dreamy while also still being imaginative. The song itself is more than “alright.” In fact, powered by TiDUS’ vocals and production, “ALRIGHT” becomes this sort of thing that’s part of something bigger than itself. That could also have something to do with TiDUS’ empath nature.
James Chatburn – “Coulda Lived Out Fantasies”
James Chatburn reminds me of a mix between Sam Smith’s airy but poignant vocals and Giveon. The way that this one builds up, it gives us a track that’s equally parts reminiscent of the past and hopeful for a new future–even if that past could’ve had Chatburn and his lover living their best lives had they made the choice to. The Australian artist’s songwriting kind of reminds me of a John Legend type as well. If this piques your interest, you’ll get a great song about moving on from the past.
Juice Lord – “On Me” (feat. Kalhoun and AKA Kobi)
St. Paul, Minnesota-born Juice Lord’s “On Me” is a smooth boombap sort of track that reminds me of some early Cole. The song is about gaining the most you can while living out your dreams. I love the chorus on this one, because it adds an extra layer of soul to the track. The production here is also solid and takes you back to the 90s or early 2000s, while still feeling timeless.
Corey Loveless – “Proof”
I like this one because it gives me those DIY vibes, that he’s just recording this locked in somewhere and spitting his truths. Featuring two other artists, Anthony Kannon and Process, “Proof” is one of those throwback songs (kind of like “On Me”) that still manages to sound timeless. I like the production on the song, as it’s very chill but still allows each artist to rock the mic right.
skipp whitman – “LOL” featuring animalmilk! and emmitt james
This one grabbed me because of its mix of early Mac Miller and its humorous approach to saying “hey, we’re good at what we do.” With punchlines aplenty and a general good vibe to the track, “LOL” will have you laughing as much as it has you bobbing your head to the smooth beat. This song appears on skipp’s 8K EP which just dropped recently. I’m intrigued enough by the bouncy vibes on “LOL” that I’m going to give the entire project a spin. That should tell you all you need to know about this one. The visuals that come along with the track have that old-school feel to them, mainly with a lot of close-up shots and a slightly-tinted view.
CC – “NewMan Freestyle”
Continuing with the boombap-esque vibes from “LOL,” Virginia artist CC raps his ass off on “NewMan.” The song itself kind of reminds me a bit of “Electric Relaxation” and features a lot of dope punchlines and a solid rapid-fire flow (read: not doubletime, but still fast and upbeat). I ran this one back quite a few times since it first crossed my line and said “damn, this is good shit.” If you’re here for some dope old-school vibes, you’ll love this one.
GEEK – “Bird Calls”
GEEK has been on my radar since earlier this year. His latest single, also from the GEEK album, is darker than the other tracks he’s dropped thus far. There’s a lot of wordplay that’ll have you rewinding the track to catch everything. The beat is pretty dark, with flutes floating throughout the track, stabbing out as needed. Even with the darkness, there’s a bit of a bounce to the flow and the instrumental. That said, it can probably find itself well in any playlist you place it in.
Ali Sahir – “Chicken Curry”
Using food as a metaphor for societal issues, Ali’s “Chicken Curry” is a fire track. It’s lyrically impressive and the flow is smooth AF. However, I love love love the fact that he’s talking about colonialism, racism and a slew of other hot topics throughout this track, some disguised, some not. It’s conscious without beating you over the head and it’s just good soul food–for the mind and the body. Plus, let’s be real: chicken curry (the dish) is amazing, even if we’re using it as a metaphor.
If I don’t talk to you all before next week, have a good holiday and be thankful for your family and friends–as well as the riches you’ve been able to amass (financially and otherwise). Support dope music in all its forms.