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The first three weeks of the 2020s have been pretty action-packed as far as music releases are concerned. Halsey and Selena Gomez have released smooth pop records, Eminem surprise dropped the chilling Music to be Murdered By and Mac Miller’s Circles hit just about everyone like an emotional ton of bricks. The underground music front has been eventful as well. Here are the three greatest tracks by up-and-coming artists to add to your new music rotation.
John Jr, “Designer”
John Jr is starting off the decade with a bang. The singer’s debut EP, Insomnia, found him singing chilling, twisted R&B over drowsy synth beats. “Designer” is a bit of a pace change for John Jr, and the title says it all; this is an ode to expensive clothing. “Sometimes you just gotta spend it all,” John says in a relaxed manner, as a glitzy trap beat drops. Irresponsible financial choices aside, this song feels like living in the lap of luxury and reflects the diversity of John’s skill set.
Solesky, “If I Die”
Towson rapper Solesky once again proves himself capable of making straightforward, even-flowing pop-rap. “If I Die” is a beautifully layered production. A chilled guitar riff and smooth synth bass carry the listener on an emotional wave, while Solesky confronts his own mortality. “If I die right now / Would the world move any faster?” he croons. This track’s silky feel and notes of emotion make it the perfect listen for those late-night hours of introspective contemplation.
Devoid of any depressive emotions, the latest collaboration between producer STVN and Aubrey Toone, who previously collaborated on a Christmas song, is a condensed shot of earnest positivity. It has become rarer and rarer to find music that is not tinged by some degree of irony, and “Somebody” bucks that trend. Sporting a lo-fi vibe and a carefree attitude, this song is the perfect cure to a Monday morning.