101 posts by

John Matraia

101 posts by

John Matraia

Most Recent Posts

Zoom – [$avvy]

By John Matraia // 10 Nov 2020

Nashville native $avvy is back with yet another great track in 2020, this time called “Zoom.” The song is a bubbly trap banger with an addicting hook, and it proves that $avvy only gets better with time. This is the first single from his upcoming album boys wear pearls, and if this track is any indication, we are about to have a very special project on our hands. $avvy’s flow here is the best it has ever been, and he switches it up with a number of different vocal inflections that guide the track from start to finish. The hook is infectious but feels effortless coming from $avvy. The beat here, produced by @cam.flp,  features multiple synthesizers that compliment each other along with some strong drums that drive the track forward. $avvy is only leveling up with each new track he puts out, and it’s only a matter of time before people start recognizing his incredible talent. Check out the neat visualizer for “Zoom” down below, shot by @ecnarc, and check out the track on all streaming platforms here!

Before – [James Blake]

By John Matraia // 20 Oct 2020

What initially drew me to James Blake’s music was his impressive ability to create meaningful, but subtle progressions, most notably on a song like “The Wilhelm Scream.” Everything he has done since his breakout self-titled album has been impressive, and his new Before EP takes us back to his electronic roots, while showcasing his strong songwriting skills that he has built up over the years. Before is a concise project, but quality-wise it is up there with Blake’s best work. Here, he delivers a collection of songs that can feel like ballads at certain points but also very dancey throughout. The production is compelling from start to finish, the vocals are hypnotizing, and the lyrics are quite pretty.  The title track ”Before” represents the range of this EP perfectly, featuring thumping bass and electronic synthesizers along with a beautiful refrain. James clicked the right buttons with this EP, and the result is a fresh and exciting project combining a multitude of sounds with a beautiful result.  Hopefully soon we hear a whole album that builds off of this sound, because it’s a winning formula. Check out this project on Spotify down below and all other streaming services here.

666 Central Ave. – [They Hate Change]

By John Matraia // 18 Aug 2020

My attention span music-wise has gone down since quarantine started. Why that is scientifically, I have no idea, but what I do know is that I’m loving short projects where artists aren’t afraid to experiment with their sound a bit. They Hate Change is back with their first EP of 2020, titled 666 Central Ave., and it’s another great one. It’s clear Andre & Vonne have been working hard this year and their growth has been inspiring to watch, with this project featuring some of their most impressive production yet, along with great chemistry and energy as usual. The standouts on here have to be “Burn My Sh*t” and “Screwface,” the latter of which features production that wouldn’t sound out of place on the last clipping. record. These tracks, along with the rest of this project, feature the duo’s tightest and catchiest flows yet, and they also continue to flex their impressive, professional-sounding mixing ability, which really stands out this time around. Check out this EP now on Spotify down below and other streaming services here.

Sum Bout U – [645AR] feat. [FKA twigs]

By John Matraia // 5 Aug 2020

Love him or hate him, 645AR brings a truly unique sound to rap. He just recently released a new track and music video featuring FKA twigs, called “Sum Bout U,” proving further that he will not be put in one box. FKA twigs is a generational talent who has put out a number of great albums over the past decade, and to see her dive deeper into the hip-hop genre is an exciting indication that she’ll dominate this decade as well. She kills it on the track with a pitched-up, extremely catchy refrain on the hook, and a tight verse. The production here, done by SenseiATL and El Guincho, is a laidback and moody trap beat with a melody that manages to play to both artists strengths. 645AR and twigs go back and forth here and display an impressive level of chemistry that will make this song one to look back on. While both do tend to experiment in their music, it was still quite the surprise to see these two artists work together. The fact that this exists in 2020 is something to celebrate. Check out the music video down below. Director: Aidan Zamiri Exec Producer: Morgan Clement Producer: …

Adam Snow – [42] ft. [Freddie Gibbs] & [Josh Alias]

By John Matraia // 28 Jul 2020

Freddie Gibbs can do no wrong. He’s been on a legendary tear ever since the release of 2019’s Bandana, his second joint project with Madlib, and after the recent release of his collaborative project with The Alchemist, Alfredo, he’s already proved that 2020 is his year too. Not only has he been putting out some great songs himself, but he’s dropping amazing guest verses effortlessly, the latest of which lands on Adam Snow’s new track “42,” which also features Josh Alias. This track features production from Adam Snow, who comes through with a solid chipmunk soul beat to set the stage, and it suits the two rappers well on the track. The song starts off with a verse you’d expect from Freddie Gibbs, which means it’s great as usual, and Josh Alias picks up right after this with a reflective verse that carries the track to a strong finish. This is not the first time producer Adam Snow has worked with Freddie Gibbs, and hopefully, it isn’t the last. They proved their strong chemistry on 9 to 5, a track from earlier this year that is just as great as this new one. Snow has the ability to chop a sample …

Shinigami – [Paris Lndn]

By John Matraia // 27 May 2020

Let me just cut to the chase: Paris Lndn is a stud. He’s put out a number of great singles over the past year, and his new one, “Shinigami”, is his best yet. He’s only improving on all fronts, and it’ll be exciting to listen to what he has to offer going forward. “Shinigami” contains Paris Lndn’s most experimental elements to date while also being his most commercially viable song, which is what makes this one an absolute smash. Sticking out in the landscape of melodic rap artists in 2020 is no easy feat, but Paris Lndn seems to do it by just being himself, and this song has a little something for everyone. The mix of Lndn’s vocals here is perfection, and brings together the ethereal feel that the subdued melody of the beat creates. He uses his time so well, and when he starts singing, he doesn’t stop, seamlessly transitioning from the addictive hook to his mystical rapping in the verses, which also have some incredibly catchy vocal melodies that keep the listener enthralled. Paris Lndn is finding himself more as an artist, and his music continues to feel like a breath of fresh air. His flow throughout …

Nippy – [Student1]

By John Matraia // 21 May 2020

I first became aware of Student1 through his feature on “Watch This” by Crashprez, an absolute haymaker from a few years back, and it’s been interesting to watch him grow as an artist throughout the years. His newest offering, titled “Nippy,” released late last month, proves his growth and versatility more than ever. “Nippy” is a hazy, laid-back tune, featuring an effortless delivery from Student1 that pairs very well with the twinkly keys and sharp, yet sparse, percussion. The track is noticeably well structured, which is what elevates it from good to great. Student’s tasteful vocal mixing and lyrics, along with undeniably catchy vocals in the refrain and verses make this one next level, and he doesn’t try to do too much, which pays off big time. Nothing is wasted and everything he gives the listener is necessary for the track’s success. I can’t wait to see where Student1 goes from here, as his range up until this point is impressessive, and if there’s more from where this came from, we should be in for quite the treat. Give this track a listen down below.  

Cholla – [Jerry Paper]

By John Matraia // 21 May 2020

It doesn’t quite feel like summer, but it is getting to be that time, and now more than ever we need feel-good summer tracks to keep our spirits up. Luckily, Jerry Paper just recently dropped the video for “Cholla” off his brand new album Abracadabra. You may remember Jerry Paper from his contribution to Tyler, the Creator’s Grinch Inspired EP from late 2018. His deep and charismatic vocals stand out right away and bring a unique and likable characteristic to his tracks, and this stays true here. “Cholla” is a lot of fun. The guitar riffs are playful, the bouncy bass lines are infectious, and the keyboard melodies create a strong foundation that guides the track along. Jerry’s vocals pair nicely with the light instrumental and he comes through with a catchy refrain that ensures this track will stay in rotation all summer long. The visuals here are strange to say the least, with very surreal animations that I can’t quite put into words. Mr. Paper’s face fills up a square screen in multiple different forms throughout the entirety of the video, twisting and turning along with the animations. Check out the otherworldly visuals for this track down below, and …

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