Kaytranada joins forces with impressive list of mainstream artists to release encouraging debut LP
Kaytranada is an electronic producer that has emerged from the underground scene and into the contemporary dance charts with his artist featured debut album. The 15-track LP contains songs featuring mainstream chart-dominating artists like AlunaGeorge, Craig David and Anderson Paak. From listening to any of these, Kaytranada has an eclectic take on electronic music that combines trap and house music with jazz, hip-hop and neo-soul influences. His artistry shows a clever influence of a mix of genres, contemporary sounds and arrangement styles.
‘Bus Ride’ is the second track on the album, which was previously released as a single back in March. Without warning, the track kicks off the album to with an impressive start. The use of the prominent syncopated drum sounds, that distinctly reminisce about 80’s funk and r’n’b styles, is enjoyable. ‘Got It Good’ has dance music mega-star Craig David providing a performance that seems slightly sleazy and by judging on this appearance it appears slightly forced. ‘Together’, brings in a throwback funk/house instrumental and features AlunaGeorge. This performance that is pulled off pretty well, Alunageorge fits on top of the track very neatly. The song however, felt short of a verse and sounded unresolved. leaves you expecting to hear another verse from GoldLink, but alas you never receive it.
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‘Drive Me Crazy’ shows off Kay’s hip-hop influences extremely well, while not losing sight of the album’s consistency. Vic Menza takes the driver’s seat in this track. You may hear a clever use of the lyric “If you had” sample of ‘Lose Yourself’ by Eminem. To add some relatable context to his lyrics, an interesting feature to the dance, neo-soul infused LP. ‘Glowed Up’ the most recent single to be released. For this track rising hip-hop star Paak compiles a stacked collection of lush vocal tracks that fit over the dark hypnotic trap beat and makes for a strong collaboration track. He puts on a slick persona, with memorable lyric moments such as; ‘Don’t I look like a Pharaoh?’.The lyrics at times appear staggered and unclear but overall the song has interesting moments that certainly make the track stand out from other modern trap releases.
Overall Kaytranada satisfies the fans that are used to more of his atmospheric instrumentals. This album combines this with more vocally driven songs to take his style to more of a pop context. Although it is risky to combine modern pop artists on this album, some of the features make for an interesting and satisfying listening experience and provide a new step forward for Kaytranada. ‘99.9%’ makes for any electronic music and hip-hop fans who are looking to experience an immersive multi-genre listen.
‘99.9%’ is out now via XL Recordings
This Kaytranada article was written by Christian Graham, a GIGsoup contributor. Edited by Zoe Anderson.