Kamikaze – [Omar Apollo]

When I first got hooked on watching The Cave with Kenny Beats, I was drawn in by all the incredible rappers he invited to the studio to freestyle over insane instrumentals. Then, when he began inviting unpredictable yet incredible talents like Marc Rebillet and Omar Apollo onto the show, my horizons began to expand, and my mind was completely blown. Their appearances brought a new side out of Kenny, while Kenny was able to challenge them and give them a soundscape that isn’t typically used by these artists. Nonetheless, they rose to the occasion, of course, and went off the rails unlike ever before.

I bring this up because Omar Apollo’s episode was my first introduction to the Indiana songbird, and although I definitely need to familiarize myself even more, when I saw he released a brand-new song entitled “Kamikaze”, I had to stop everything I was doing and tune in. To start the beat off on the right foot, producers Omar Velasco and Teo Halm team up to offer up dreamy, mystifying, and resounding synths of some sort paired with an instrument that sounds like a filtered electric guitar. Eventually, a consistently groovy bassline coupled with old school-inspired percussion enters into the picture, giving this track some rhythm and movement that Omar elevates wonderfully.

As he begins to sing, he speaks a few short phrases that echo and taper off into the distance. After this, he begins singing with such passion in his voice. Although he seems to hold himself back as if to not get too emotional, his subdued demeanor can’t hold back the feelings he has on his mind no matter how hard he might try. I’m not sure if it’s just because of the tone of this song or if he always sounds like this, but I get a strong Frank Ocean vibe from this hit, and that’s one of the highest compliments I can give out due to the fact that Frank is personally a top favorite artist of mine, which I’m sure isn’t an unpopular opinion for most people.

In the background, you can hear the sounds of humming pairing with the melodious nature of his voice and rhythmic mannerisms within the production, accenting these elements perfectly without stealing the show or taking away from them in the slightest. Almost halfway through, the bassline seems to grow stronger and more prevalent, and Omar responds to this change by chopping up certain lines in order to bounce along with the tempo of the beat, changing up not only his cadence but his attitude as well.

Towards the end, a breakdown within the song occurs as a sort of bridge as the instrumental completely simplifies and his vocals echo with every single word he speaks before going back into the chorus one final time, leading us out of this beautiful ballad. Although certain themes might be slightly ambiguous because Omar never comes right out and blatantly says the message behind this song throughout its duration, it seems as if he’s having trouble getting over an old flame even though he understands that the feelings and emotions behind this relationship are no longer present, unfortunately for him.

After hearing this brand-new track, I legitimately went into my Apple Music account and downloaded both of the projects from the past few years that he has on the app so I can go and listen to them later on. His voice is calming yet emotive at the same time, and the jazzy aspects mixed with the soulful R&B elements within this track are just magnificent, in my opinion. There’s also a lyric video that comes with this single, and it shows Omar running along a beach as the sun sets behind him, elevating the passion of this song as the lyrics appear on the bottom of the screen. If you’ve been sleeping on Omar Apollo as I have for whatever reason, there are no more excuses, especially after listening to “Kamikaze”, so make sure you check out the brand-new single as well as the rest of his offerings as soon as you possibly can.