It’s Monday (and MLK Day). You know what that means. After being out of commission much of the last 36 hours because of my booster shot, I’m back and ready to support dope music in all its forms. These are Monday’s Quickies, courtesy of SOTBMusic. Sorry for the brevity. Truthfully, the booster knocked me on my ass.
Tommy Danger – “Never Trippin”
I liked this one from the jump because of its honest approach. Danger talks about some of the negatives he indulged in as a young man while also speaking on the positives he’s trying to put out into the world. I also loved the DIY/demo-like approach to this one, as it reminded me of something I would’ve put out during my career.
makro – “Self Control”
The stylings of makro give an added layer of beauty and sadness to a classic Frank Ocean song. The Filipino-American duo employ a lot of guitar licks and multilayered vocals to engulf listeners and and put them right in the thick of the emotional song. I like this one because it becomes its own thing while still paying homage to Frank’s beautiful vocals.
Morgan Magras – “Gold Digger”
This one takes the “gold digger” stereotype and asks the following: if the dude only has money to offer, is the woman really a gold digger? Over a song that sounds like a Summer Walker track, Magras discusses this mindset and also puts the men back in the focus, telling them to offer more in relationships besides just sex and cash.
Whitney McClain – “Bombs Away”
A re-release of sorts, “Bombs Away” was originally McClain’s first track to do streaming numbers back in 2016. Fast forward to 2022 and the song remains as timeless as it did when first released. I love her vocals as they’re airy but still powerful, which helps build upon the throwback vibes we get in the instrumental.
Jurnalist – “Nighttime”
The song has a “riding through the city at 2AM” vibe to it, but it’s also one of those songs that lets you into the artist’s mind. Jurnalist had a big loss in his life and decided to turn that into music to help cope. He’s seemingly moving past the tragedy and growing every day, but I love that he was very transparent on this song. The lyrics are poignant and thought-provoking while the hook ties everything together. Overall, it’s a great song.
King James III – “Backwards”
This one reminds me a bit of something the bro Scorcese (RIP) would’ve dropped. That’s because it’s got that bombastic but lyrical rap feel to it. It’s got a boss flow while still having a bit of fun with the sound of the track. I like the video, though I wish I got another verse on the track versus having verse/chorus/chorus, but that’s a minor thing because the song is solid. The hook will get stuck in your head and the bars will keep you entertained and bobbing your head.
Sage. and Langston Bristol – “Burgundy Red”
I think the best way to describe this one is “imagine Silk Sonic was fronted by Mac Miller and Blu and were more a rap/R&B group than just neo-funk.” There’re lyrically-impressive lines aplenty and the vocals have an early-era Miguel vibe to them. I love the beat as well, because it blends a lot of subgenres together. That mix creates an aesthetically-pleasing sound that also sounds very unique and original. I also like how this one came together, because the group’s vocalist demoed the track, the band layered their sound then they sent it to Langston Bristol for the flows at the end.
Shontelle – “Be the One”
Shontelle’s name takes me back to the late-2000s, as she co-wrote Rihanna’s “Man Down” but also handled her own on a mic as well, with songs like “T-Shirt.” Almost fourteen years after her debut album, the Barbadian songstress’s vocals are just as strong as they were back in 2008. In fact, I feel that they’ve gotten even stronger in the time between her early stuff and now. I love a good comeback story, and with the vocals and songwriting on “Be the One,” Shontelle’s setting up to be another good one for 2022.
Manny Baby – “Long Live Mal”
I got grabbed by this one because of its background. The song is dedicated to Manny’s little brother who passed at an early age (and to anyone who’s lost someone). I love the production on this one and I like Manny’s flow; it’s got a mainstream feel to it, but still has that gruffness and harshness that it isn’t just smooth around the edges. It’s like a mix between Future and Roddy Ricch. The Milwaukee-based artist tapped into his hurt and pain and created a beautiful song for his family.
Remmoi Dollaz – “GHANDI”
If you like your hip-hop to be barred up, this one’s for you. If you want your barred-up hip-hop over soulful beats like something you’d hear from Griselda, “GHANDI” (or “Gangstas Hustlers Anthem, Never Die Infinite/Imperial”) is for you. Remmoi Dollaz raps his ass off on this one and the beat kept my head nodding hard AF. I’m a sucker for jazzy boombap and this one was right up my alley. Check it out.
LBS – “Big LBS”
Our last Quickie comes from Virginia native LBS. Here, he decided to provide listeners with a West Coast-sort of flow and vibe. This one grabbed me because it’s fun but still lyrically sound. When LBS attacks the beat with a doubletime flow, I found myself bobbing my head to the flow (which is a big thing because I’m not usually a fan of superduper fast flows). LBS also has a lot of punchlines within the song, so I appreciated that as well.
You all know the assignment. Check out these tracks above and remember to support dope music in all its forms.