The London scene has been healthy as of late. Finally at a place of stability artists are flourishing at a rapid rate and finally able to grow their fan bases consistently and utilise emerging outlets to promote their material. One of these acts; Malick IV has been an upcoming talent since 2013 when he dropped his free EP Blood of a Martyr. This project gained him a massive feature on the MOBO’s “Underground Releases” feature and kickstarted his fan following. Fast-forward to 2016 and after years of cultivating his talent Malick is back with a brand new EP which was released recently via SoundCloud. Entitled STEEZ DADDY, does he do enough to maintain a presence?
An eerie but vibed out backing is felt on the opening track ‘Too Deep‘. Malick’s tone is instantly matter of fact and localised, it feels almost like a friend is chatting calmly to the listener as the song begins to take shape. “Reminiscing on some simpler times within the family // Fiesta eyes through Hackney Tamagotchi in the back seat”. Malick seems to be reflecting on his childhood and how many laughs and fond memories are present during that time period. In contrast, nowadays, he has the family pressure to marry and continue the family bloodline. Quite a relatable and evidently thoughtful track and allows the audience to engage with a deeper mood for the record.
‘Apples‘ takes the second spot and the bass-heavy introduction sets things in motion more and creates a slightly amplified atmosphere for the listener. “Girl i beg don’t mess around, my slippers round tryna ride the wave.” Malick is in an evidently funner mood here and wants to up the ante with a girl of interest as he tries to seduce her in 3 minutes and 54 seconds. Does he succeed however? “I’m like adam with the apples I just have to take a bite” the MC spits towards the final stages of ‘Apples‘, it seems he may have just had his way with persuasion by the closing.
After more chasing on ‘17‘, ‘My Tour Song‘ brings the EP back to a serious vibe. A keyboard led soundscape fills the ear as Malick is on a mission. “Now I think bigger, I’m thinking penthouse in the Radisson”. The London rapper has his expectations set high and throughout ‘My Tour Song‘ reiterates his passions for the elite sphere of things. It’s a motivational track and despite its ego-fuelled lyrics at times, it’s a track which speaks to Malick’s demographic, that being young adults, mostly all aspire for similar things, so therefore he manages to capture attention.
‘Ghosts‘ rounds off the set and initiates a sense of self pride in the face of resistance. The track is littered in drum, bass and piano riffs. It focuses on Malick’s battles with the police and institutionalised racism. As Malick narrates, the story whether fictional or not instantly makes the listener think of wider societal issues and the failed system. A lot of artists both mainstream and up and coming focus on social justice issues it’s very relevant to contemporary western society and Malick’s approach on it here definitely works. “You’re a King young man you’re a King”, is the final line we hear from the rapper before the EP reaches its end
Malick IV does well to engage his audience here, a great and relaxed set offering a variety of different elements, subject focus and mood-scapes. A brilliant technique to grab multiple listeners. The production could’ve been stronger to create a stronger presence, however the EP presented was undoubtedly worth the play.
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