Zaza – [Kevin Kazi]

For me, Kevin Kazi is a bit of a household name in my personal world of music. I’ve been listening to him legitimately for years at this point and I’ve never grown sick or tired of the music he has produced. Speaking of which, he has been one of the most consistent but also dexterous rappers in the entire industry, yet he still seems to not get the respect he so desperately deserves. He has been on a steady grind and his rise into the spotlight isn’t one that he has grown impatient for because he believes in the quality of his work and knows that eventually, it’ll all pay off. He’s not one of those artists who are willing to change themselves or their sound and compromise their integrity just to become an overnight sensation which is an extremely notable part of his work if I do say so myself. He ultimately experiments with so many different sounds and remains in my head as one of the most unique artists I can think of, and this is going to yield incredible results in the long run.

Most recently, he has been somewhat quiet, but being a fan of his for as long as I have been, I knew he was cooking up something really special. The result is a song called “Zaza”, and it comes with even more confirmation that he has a mixtape on the way, which just simply couldn’t arrive quick enough. The instrumental, created by thislandis and Falsecut, begins with high-pitched, almost Indie Rock sounding electric guitar riffs or synths of some sort coupled with quieter, lower-pitched chords that set the tempo to the song before any percussion even enters the picture. When the hats and claps do come in, they provide some vitality and crispness to the track prior to some booming drums coming into the scene, truly bringing it to the next level.

As Kevin comes in, he sings in a somewhat sorrowful yet impassioned manner, spitting words off as he raises and lowers the pitch of his voice every few words and does so continuously for a good amount of time. There is evident autotune on his voice but there also seems to be a few layers of vocals, adding a bit more of a crowded yet powerful feeling behind each word he sings. It also appears as if each layer has some sort of slight filter that provides some graininess or impurities to his voice, making it sound like you’re listening to him sing on a radio that doesn’t have great reception. At the same time, this is done intentionally and I for one am a big fan of this style considering it’s one of the many things that other artists don’t typically use, adding some individualism to his already inventive track.

As he finishes off the chorus, he repeats the title of the song and rhymes it with some other familiar words in the perfect way, pairing his flow with the instrumental astoundingly well. When he gets into his verse, he begins each bar quickly prior to slowing down and letting his words linger in your mind before bringing his cadence full circle and boasting this style yet again. After another hook, the beat plays out as he utilizes a dreamy, wistful delivery in the background, singing about smoking Zaza, which is apparently a strain of weed that helps bring him peace and happiness. As he makes his way throughout the song, he tackles topics such as trust issues, people who he thought he was close with switching up on him, and always wanting to party and never be sober.

If you can listen to this song and not understand why I have such strong admiration for the up and coming star known as Kevin Kazi, you might just want to get your eardrums checked. He doesn’t have a commercially typical voice when it comes to singing but this helps add to some of the emotion and fervor in his delivery, and it honestly connects with me on a more personal level than most other artists can. Not only is his sound unique, but he is so versatile and can switch up his flows in the blink of an eye, going from singing to rapping without you even realizing because of the tuneful nature of his voice. This track seems to be the second single off of the aforementioned upcoming mixtape he has been talking about, so I’m excited to see what’s to come moving forward. No information regarding a title or release date of the tape has been announced so far, from what I’ve seen, but you already know I’ll be tuning in and paying attention to any new developments. For now, be sure to check out Kevin Kazi’s latest single “Zaza” and see why I enjoy it so much with your own two ears.