Proving a creative hub for feel good vibes, Rejjie Snow has emerged from the shadows with his vivid new compendium of trippy introspection.
As a bright spark in the often abstract sphere of alternative hip-hop, the Dublin wordsmith has proven once again that abnormality is not only respected, but it sells. It’s hard to believe his musical hiatus lasted as long as it did, yet the warmth and familiarity of this record instils the idea that he never actually left.
Welcomed with bright tones and hallucinatory diction, Baw Baw Black Sheep swiftly unfastens its heavy weight of expectation with the evocative textures of Grateful, a bright eyed introductory exploration into the instrumental stalwarts of bass and synth, serenaded by Snow’s typically drawn out vocal cadence. The album opus Cookie Chips, featuring the late great MF Doom, dives head-first into the kaleidoscopic summer-infused nook of Snow’s sugar-coated cerebrum. It’s drunk on nonchalance approach still packs a clock-watching punch, driven by the jellied inflection of the chopped rhodes as Rejjie and Doom glide effortlessly over the beat.
“Your mind will answer most questions if you learn to relax and wait for the answer.”
If you want instrumentation and lyrical ingenuity to go toe to to toe, then Mirrorsis a stand out. Rejjie handles the rap sections with a slew of verses, spouting a deluge of intricate wordplay as the angelic pipes of Snoh Alegra and Cam Obi croon mellifluously in the background. Now for the beat. It sounds like it could’ve been produced by The Neptunes from the offset. Credit where credit’s due, Dee Lilly killed the instrumental. That dreamy combination of wispy flute and crisp resonant drums transports you into a state of utter transcendence, and there’s plenty more of that to come.
As the project enters its core, Relaxassumes the lead single responsibility with complete conviction.It boasts a trap-infused complexion, propelled by flickering hi-hats and a zany procession of bit-crushed drums that meld to form a jungle-like guise, and as before, Rejjie’s skippy flow catches every line flawlessly whilst Cam Obi cements a calming aura that trickles throughout the set list.
The following number Oreosplays true to the title, personifying its velvet-like centre with a stylish ambience. Sonically it plays like a speakeasy live freestyle, a beautiful cut indeed. On & On continues this joyously jazz-infused buoyancy, reviling in a spoil of rich high tones, pitches and melodies as Rejjie continues his stylistic pattern of gliding over the beats.
Despite it’s dark and ominous cover art, this album emanates positivity from every corner, ending on a sonic high in the form of Disco Pantz, Star in the Making and Shooting Star, which round off the project so effortlessly as we proceed towards the end.
You don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone. Those 3 years of Snow’s musical abstinence taught us all that, but we always new he would return. His movements haven’t been elusive, far from it in fact. A Kanye support slot, the collaboration with Clairo, it’s all been a breadcrumb trail leading to this project; and my does it deliver, not just for followers of Alternate Hip-Hop but for music lover alike.