Three new singles from ScHoolboy Q, Anderson .Paak and the Black Keys dropped recently. They showcase the diverse array of talent and styles present in today’s soundscape. Here’s a breakdown of each of them.
ScHoolboy Q - "Numb Numb Juice"
ScHoolboy Q wastes no time in his latest single, “Numb Numb Juice.” In less than two minutes, the rapper takes the listeners from their everyday and throws them into the middle of a crowded, intense party.
The track packs a mean punch with its trap instrumental, but it remains lackluster. The instrumentation is basic and overdone with its boosted bass and generic electronic beat. It’s just another trap song that you would hear from the speakers in a freshman dorm.
However, Q’s swagger is ever- present, making his flows the saving grace of the track. You can tell that he is just having fun with this single. He knows he’s not making refined, well-established art. He’s just making another trap banger to be thrown on some college kid’s house party playlist.
“Numb Numb Juice” is not an anthem that will stand the test of time. It’s just another party song that will, regardless of your taste, make you move your body and get you into a party mindset.
Hip-hop, like all other genres, is full of generic, run-of-the-mill artists over-saturating the airwaves. However, hip-hop does have its standout artists that constantly innovate and push the genre forward, and Anderson .Paak perfectly exemplifies this with his newest single “King James.”
The funky track creates a ritzy world full of groove and glamour. The saxophone, in combination with be 70’s bass and guitar, show the listener funk is still alive and strong.
Funk music celebrates life more than any genre with his groovy hooks and syncopated rhythms, forcing any listener to move their hips to the heavy, ever-intoxicating beat. Anderson .Paak was able to continue this celebration with this new rap-infused funk jam.
If Curtis Mayfield were still alive and tried to dabble in hip-hop while staying true to his funk style, the end result would be “King James.”
Breaking their five year hiatus, mainstream blues rockers the Black Keys came back with pure, unadulterated rock with its latest single “Lo/Hi.”
Right from the start, guitarist Dan Auerbach punches a power chord on his distortion-soaked electric guitar and invites the listener to abandon all their rules and morals in favor of sex, drugs and rock 'n’ roll.
One of the biggest fears of any rock artist is to grow old and make dad rock. The Black Keys are at the point where they could easily go down this path, but due to their raw determination, endless creativity, and a nasty attitude, the Keys create modern rock for a modern age.
Rock has been losing its touch with popularity for a while now, but tracks like this have the potential to bring rock back to its roots while sounding modern enough to keep the interest of today’s listeners.
“Lo/Hi” sounds like a modern take on “Born to Be Wild,” making listeners grab their nearest leather jacket and hit the open road in search of good times, cheap bars and American freedom.