Ferry Ride – [Niko Rose]

By Mike del Ro // 9 Apr 2020

As the days start to blend together and time reaches a sort of standstill, it always feels like a win whenever I’m able to find a song that fits this specific daze I’ve been personally in and I’m sure a lot of other people are feeling too given the state of the world right now. So, stumbling on Niko Rose’s easygoing and hazy new release “Ferry Ride” in my inbox has been one of the highlights of my day so far. A minimally produced and slow-building composition paired with Rose’s indie-pop vocal style emotes a feeling that’s nostalgic and exhibits this uncanny coming-of-age quality. The song itself gets a pick-me-up once the drums kick in, adding another layer of light bounce over the electronic keys and other synths that reverberate softly throughout. The artist then gets into his own flow over this beat that’s both catchy and endearing in its lyricism. Rose’s ear for tongue-twisting songwriting and entrancing melodies create a cohesive mood that’s relaxed and unhurried—a moment that begs to last just a bit longer.

Hungry AF – [Kelo Of Dopeness]

By Mike del Ro // 9 Apr 2020

One of the strongest tools at a rapper’s disposal that can set them apart from the pack is the tone of their voice. It’s an underrated quality that often goes unnoticed, but I’m sure if most of us think of our own favorite rappers, each of them would have a distinct and memorable vocal quality. Enter Kelo Of Dopeness, a promising emcee from the west coast who’s self-assured, gravelly presence on his new track “Hungry AF” makes exactly the type of first impression that leaves a lasting impact long after the minute-and-a-half runtime is over. The way Kelo’s voice cuts through the trap production supplied by 4eyes gets emphasized even more by his lyrical abilities as well. His slick-tongued and dextrous bars carry with them the confident execution of a seasoned veteran, making it all the more enticing for a listener to buy-in to his boastful lyrics. The accompanying music video is just the right amount of visually captivating for this shorter track, showcasing Melo sticking his head out of a sunroof as he drives and spins around carelessly through the streets at night.

Enemies – [Brendan Bennett] x [Sling] x [André DeSaint]

By Mike del Ro // 3 Apr 2020

Brendan Bennett’s no stranger to infectiously catchy songs, and the songwriter’s latest collaboration with artists Sling and André DeSaint is no exception. “Enemies” brings the addictive pop-infused melodic rap sound that’s been heating up the Florida music scene as of late, and this track proves that this trio of local talent are each pioneers of that wave in their own rights.  “Enemies” exemplifies a carefully calculated balance of lyrical content and hit-making potential, demonstrating that one doesn’t necessarily need to be sacrificed for the other. In fact, it seems all three of these artists excel when they’re able to do both. Bennett, Sling, and DeSaint all leave their own mark on the song with memorable, vengeful verses aimed at anyone trying to get in the way of their success. Sling’s energetic and animated hook brings the song full circle, delivering a melody that’s bound to get stuck in listeners’ heads.

Bored In The House – [Curtis Roach] x [Tyga]

By Mike del Ro // 2 Apr 2020

Last week, a friend of mine was scrolling through a series of Tik-Tok’s all with the same ridiculously catchy song about being bored at home (as we all probably have been sometime in the past few weeks). To my surprise, the artist behind this viral song is one I’ve been familiar with for a couple of years already and have covered on Lyrical Lemonade multiple times in the past. I recognized the lighthearted, slick delivery of Detroit artist Curtis Roach’s comical bars almost instantly and was even more intrigued by the viral trend he had just started. “Bored In The House” is the infectious quarantine anthem we’ve all been waiting for. It’s extremely simple, and Roach knows how to not take himself too seriously while still spitting some impressive bars about being stuck at home all day. The song’s hook is dumb simple, walking a fine line between obnoxious and genius but coming out on the latter side thanks to Roach’s charisma behind the mic. As if the song weren’t viral enough, it also gets a major feature appearance from none other than Tyga who also spits an outstanding barrage of social distance-inspired heat. Watch the homemade video for “Bored …

Benjamin – [ELIANA]

By Mike del Ro // 1 Apr 2020

Being stuck at home for the foreseeable future is definitely a weird mood, but finding just the right song to liven up socially-isolated life makes things feel a little more familiar again. Coming through with a song that hits especially hard for those long days inside is Chicago soul artist ELIANA and her latest single “Benjamin”.  ELIANA delivers sensual RnB that draws from the genre’s timeless melodic stylings while keeping in-step with the current state of RnB through her sharp lyricism and crisp production by Matt Audio Dope. The rising vocalist sounds re-energized on this track, keeping impressive control over her powerful voice, picking and choosing her moments to make sure they hit with maximum impact. As a result, “Benjamin” comes across as the refined, potent dose of RnB that we could all use right about now. Listen below:

Hollywood (No This Isn’t) – [Alex Banin]

By Mike del Ro // 1 Apr 2020

With just two official singles out so far, singer/songwriter Alex Banin has already made a distinguishable mark off of her ability to blend pop and RnB sounds with her instantly memorable voice. The rising artist continues to build momentum around her music with her first music video for her first single, “Hollywood (No This Isn’t)”. The music video captures the track’s delicateness with carefully thought out, beautifully composed scenes from the minds of director Lucia Agajanian and Banin herself. “Hollywood” comes to life through simple yet visually powerful scenes that allure a viewer’s eye, striking the same mood as the song’s heart-torn narrative and subdued energy. Clever visual allusions to the track’s lyrics and a distorted representation of reality make “Hollywood” stand out from just any other music video, and this same level of intentionality has resonated throughout Banin’s music so far.  Watch the music video for “Hollywood (No This Isn’t)” below:

Life = Good – [Ovrkast.]

By Mike del Ro // 28 Mar 2020

Oakland-based artist Ovrkast. made his skills as both a producer and rapper known on his debut project, ‘Try Again’, which dropped this January. Since then, the multi-faceted hip-hop creative has kept busy by dropping a consistently solid series of beats and remixes via his alt-Soundcloud page. It seems even social-isolation won’t even stop him from dropping heat, either, as he releases his own rendition of Drake and Future’s “Life is Good”. Both legendary rappers offer ample flows for a producer like Ovrkast. to do some serious damage with, and he quickly gets to work with their vocals by re-fitting them with precise sample-chops and lo-fi drums that completely rearrange the vibe of the track. Trading the ominous, trap production of the original song for the more vintage and syncopated hip-hop sound that Ovrkast. does best, he leaves his mark on the song in a way that reinvigorates a song we’ve all gotten pretty familiar with by now. Get in tune with Ovrkast. below and peep his ‘Try Again’ project as well.

Dazed – [Postcard Boy]

By Mike del Ro // 28 Mar 2020

A period of self-reflection for musician and visual artist Garrett Seamans has led to the creation of his latest artistic pursuit as Postcard Boy. A blend of hip-hop, punk, indie and electronic sounds, Postcard Boy mixes these influences with a strong visual aesthetic as well, which comes to fruition in his new music video titled ‘Dazed’. The lead single off of Postcard Boy’s forthcoming EP, ‘Limbo’, embodies the mood evoked by its title both musically and visually. Seamans distorted vocals simmer over heavy synth lines and disorienting instrumentation that captures the feeling of being stuck in a mid-afternoon stupor. The video accentuates this tone in its simplicity, showing the artist stumbling along the beach at sunset and holding on to a bouquet of flowers as if it were a microphone. The reflections of the cloudy sky in the sand function to mirror the ruminating nature of Postcard Boy’s songwriting, ultimately setting the tone for what seems like it will be a memorable debut EP from this promising artist. Watch the music video for “Dazed” below, and keep an eye out for Postcard Boy’s ‘Coffin’ project in the near future.