Ready to take flight with this smooth tune, Don’t be 2LATE to show love to GQ the Fool. Working with a couple talented artists, GQ releases his latest R&B tune 2LATE. The vibe is produced by Versus, with a relaxing beat, the energy is completed with GIFFTED on the chorus, singing “Please don’t be too late to love me,” followed by his finishing verses. GQ starts the track with his hip hop influenced R&B lyricism. The two compliment each other well, as they both have a suave flow that lets the beat breathe, while delivering just enough of their mind and charm. A proper follow up to his RED ROOM music video with Keem Singing, these tracks can surely heat up a dance floor, or a date night out.
Seemingly an endless flow of creative effort, Queen Mars is back again with more music and videos to accompany. Consistency is the name of the game, and this girl is a boss player. Not letting anything stop her, she has been on the move since quarantine, when most people stagnated with the times, the queen has been releasing content after content. Taking off with the B!TCH quarantine promo video, she followed up with an official music video, visual concept art for LET ME LOVE YOU, MISS AMERICA, QUEEN OF HEARTS, and multiple video performances for Art After Dark.
Wasting no time with the new year, Queen Mars is back again with BOYS LIKE YOU. Starting out the video with a fierce gaze, as if she sees into your soul, before the beat drops, you know she is not playing any funny games! Lyrically laying out her distaste in the key word of boys, who have no intention for genuine love, but promiscuity instead. In accordence with her previous music video releases, Queen Mars creates concept, design and art to make an entertaining video, aside from her flawless singing and smokin hot wardrobe!
YOUNG XAV follows up and comes through on his music video promise! His first release of the year, KISS KISS BANG BANG, covers the feelings of heart break in relationships; a culmination of all his personal experiences regarding love connections in one song. Ever Evolved got to interview YOUNG XAV about the significance of the new release, noting a change in direction of sound moving forward. The music video itself montages his different experiences with different women, his own lyrics expressed through their lips, creating an atmosphere of tension. The video also features behind the scenes shot, before and after the making of the visuals, giving viewers a peak into the creative process that went into KISS KISS BANG BANG.
Having the opportunity to sit down with YOUNG XAV for an interview, there are a few things to learn about this up and coming artist! First introduced to his music with the release of AFTER DARK, you would instantly notice there is more to this artist than just the music. He has a story to tell! Breaking down a little bit of his creative process, we also get an idea of the direction YOUNG XAV is going with, regarding his current and newer music entries.
Making music since 2017, it was not until the release of AFTER DARK that he decides to take on the hobby more seriously. When asked what his purpose is behind his music, YOUNG XAV responds with, “I think just narrative driven, that’s my thing. I can’t make music if I’m not living life… Big thing for me, is to tell what I have to feel… Cheaper than a shrink. Sometimes expensive.” Noting that relate-ability is key in the messages he conveys to his audience.
In regards to how YOUNG XAV gets comfortable expressing his vulnerabilities, he responds with, “Thing is I never created something where it’s like, wow, I’m literally exposing myself. When it comes to my friends I keep things very tight nit, I keep things very closed, but my music contradicts that. If you want to know about me, for better or for worse, you can hear my music. It’s therapeutic. It translates to something different. It’s never been difficult to deal with that vulnerability.” As you listen to his songs from AFTER DARK and the following, you will notice a deep sense of introspection within each track. Whether it is personal or involving relationships.
Out with a new release, his new tune KISS KISS BANG BANG is no exception. In the song he confides to his listeners about heartbreak and the emotional trauma connected. However the difference with KISS KISS BANG BANG and other heart break songs like IN MY HEAD, YOUNG XAV would say it is more of a culmination of thought about all his past relationships, and not specific to a single individual. When asked how he gets through heart break, he simply says, “I write a song about it, and if that doesn’t work, make more music.”
KISS KISS BANG BANG also represents a new direction of sound YOUNG XAV mentioned with his last release, MANIA FREESTYLE. Preparing for his next big release, his 2nd album, DEAD BY DAWN, ready for an October 1st release date. YOUNG XAV notes, “KISS KISS BANG BANG is the perfect bridge, if I released certain songs in DEAD BY DAWN it would sound like an entire 180. So I think with releasing kiss bang bang, instead of being a shocker, it’s more of a bridge.” Specifically, YOUNG XAV, plans to experiment past the genre of hip hop and rap that he has been used to, and into more melodic sounds and singing, live instrumentation as well as dipping into lo-fi, jazz and rock genres.
When asked why the new take on his music, YOUNG XAV responds with great insight. “It’s crucial to story telling. There’s certain stories you can tell in genre of rap, then there is certain stories you can’t. In terms of genres I don’t think about them as categories that define an artist… But instead more of which genre can I use, which tools can I use to best explain how I feel.” Very thoughtful perception to take in as you listen to his songs moving forward! The story for KISS KISS BANG BANG is not over just yet, as YOUNG XAV also plans for a music video release, on the 29th of January. So stay tuned for visuals coming up very soon, as he prepares you his next big LP, DEAD BY DAWN related in concept to AFTER DARK.
There is always room for fresh artists to be recognized and Chicago is flourishing. Seeing an influx of soulful and R&B singers, we are introduced to yet another talented voice. Charmaine Makeda steps up to the mic with a debut self titled EP Project, after releasing a few singles. Adding to the already diverse plate of creatives in Chicago, she notes to social media there is only more to come.
Seven songs deep, the EP starts out with SEE YOU AGAIN, a passionate song of romance, with a chorus that will have you singing along by the second go. LONELY gets more sensual, with a touch of saxophone, slow deep bass and a catchy piano loop, keeping the vocals to a seductive whisper. As her EP continues Charmaine gets deeper into her mind and her thoughts, a deep thinking romantic, embracing her humanity. ANXIETY INTERLUDE and NOTE 2 MYSELF, is the back and forth in our head, the lows and highs, that happens to the best of us. Charmaine Makeda so eloquently, fluently and fearlessly expresses her mind, from beginning to end, resulting in a beautiful project.
Another up and coming artist in Chicago is breaking grounds with a significant achievement in her music career. Yajaira is making some noise with her debut EP, REALISY. The singer, dancer and model is inclined towards soulful genres like R&B, Pop, Neo-Soul and even Gospel, having experience singing in Church and summer camp talent competitions. Her debut EP even dips into more cultural genres like reggae, and reggaeton creating a diverse portfolio from the start.
Starting REALISY off strong with a MAKE IT, a collaboration featuring K Breeze, and J. Trav. Walking the line of confidence and ambition with a hook like, “My future I can see it. When my eyes close, I can dream it. Can’t let no one come between, all my life I swear I mean it.” Following up would be WHAT YOU DO TO ME, a reggae influenced track adding diversity to the EP, singing about the dance of a temporary and fleeting seduction. Pondering about attraction in TO BE IN LOVE, she sings beautifully as she unravels her thoughts. Yajaira innocently lets her fans know the project is about her own perspectives, embracing her point of view and being able to visually create the world she sees. Her vocals paint a colorful picture of her mind and her range is a refreshing addition to the music community in Chicago, particularly R&B.
Real lowkey artist with a soulful voice, Me’chelle presents her fans with WHIRLWIND. Since performing at an Ever Evolved Empower Herstory event a few years back, her sound and energy could not escape the mind. Patience is well deserved as WHIRLWIND brings a sound of peaceful composure. Speaking like a goddess and a guardian, “but when we let that hurt go look how great we can be, two god like beings, with a billion destiny, I dont need you to rescue me, and with out you I’m complete.” Though the chorus would imply personal relationships, the simple yet powerful lyrics echoes independence and security. The R&B and Soulful energy brought by the drum pattern, bass line and ambient sounds compliment Me’Chelles vocals, creating a disarming yet relaxing vibe when you need it.
When every avenue is exhausted, music can be the language of resilience. It is music that unites us in unexpected moments and situations, especially in the events of 2020. KvreeM uses his recent music selection to convey a message to the universe and his followers: “Through it all we can prevail.” May KvreeM’s latest EP release, GAPERTURE, fill the holes that 2020 has undoubtedly left us with.
Starting out with a smooth jazz tune with BE READY, with a chorus introducing you to the South Suburban Chicago artist, “He’s coming back again.” Back after another big release earlier in the month, THE MAINSTREAM TAPE Vol. II. Bridging into his next track LONELY PT. 2 is some commentary regarding black identity. “Being black is being resilient, it’s being the root of pop culture… being black is being original.” The statement is backed up with the obvious, (if you have been paying attention) from music of any genre: Jazz, Rock N Roll with Little Richard, Hip Hop with DJ Kool Herc, and even fashion & culture. In fact being black can be seen as the root of all originality, as we are all born of Africa, as one species migrating and adapting throughout the whole world. This theme of empowering messaging continues with THE WOO BOSCO THEORY.
Getting into more hip hop influenced jazz as the EP continues, CONCRETE JUNGLE highlights KvreeMs uniqueness. “Don’t compare me to the rest I’m incomparable, don’t let them people tune into your frequency,” he raps in chorus with versus outlining the box that this CONCRETE JUNGLE tries to mold us into, tied in with a music video months back. GAPERTURE would be the most energetically boastful of the EP, and the latter actually makes you wanna connect with KvreeM, and match him on a bottle at a party, but you better be matching frequencies! Always time for a celebration of growth, before we get back down to earth with SYMPHONIES and THERAPY. Perhaps the most relatable tracks as KvreeM contemplates his hustle, his struggles and his personal health, environment and growth. All in all, GAPERTURE is a superb project that can either help you heal or just get through the day with some quality music.
Patiently waiting for new Brittany Nacole tunes, and our ears are finally rewarded with the glorious sound of her voice! Back with a new record after a long hiatus, time has certainly polished her talent like water in nature. Of course an artist works at their own pace, and perfection cannot be rushed! For Brittany does not create music for the moment but timeless sounds to be played repeatedly. Still buzzing in our head is the melodies of her EARF GURL LP, released just 3 years ago, followed up with NOCAINE & RIOT singles, just a year apart from one another, giving you an idea of her musics timelessness.
The energy Brittany emits through her music is quite calming and savory, giving you a sense of comfort and relaxation. Not something to lounge to, but to stroll and dance to confidently in your own energy, influenced by her sound. This still holds true with her new track HAVE YOUR WAY. The chorus itself can take you away on a cloud, “Would you like it, if I let you have your way. Don’t you fight it, baby have your way. Been a while now, since I saw your face. Been a minute, we’ve been on the chase.” This R&B track is instantly timeless, and we can go for another while cruising on this tune happily, but let us hope we hear some more Brittany Nacole sooner rather than later!
From planting the seed and nurturing the growth of your roots, branching out in many strengths, to eventually sprouting and taking off. In many ways HAYWARD can metaphorically connect with this process. From production, to rap vocals and videography & directing, he nurtured his growth and knowledge, and as a result creates unmatched master pieces, from his video styles to his music. Recently releasing an earful with a music video and a 3 track project BAMBOO, PT 1 following up BLUES IN RHYTHM. Teaming with long time associate Gino Rose to create video and audio dopeness.
Gino Rose and HAYWARD worked together on music for a long period of time, going back years. HAYWARD mentions on social media they have been sitting on these tunes for a while now, not rushing the result of the projects. In the end, the sound is of quality and visuals is TOO ON, as they would say in a latest music video release. Although separate from BAMBOO PT. 1, you can hear the similarities between projects through its energy, and how the two artists compliment each other lyrically. Filmed at Beat Box Entertainment Studio, where HAYWARD works with Gino and a whole group of talented creatives, the video is a good metaphor to how far he has come, and foreshadowing of the concept behind BAMBOO PT 1, released just a few days later on December 1st.
Produced by HAYWARD as well, BAMBOO PT. 1 is a short and sweet Hip Hop project with a hint of R&B energy in there. The first track instantly hits you with crisp bass beat work and smooth piano chords, while the chorus locks you into a vibe with its first tracks, first words, “Girl you are my, my ultimate high.” TIME brings it back to hip hop with some lo-fi energy and another catchy rhythm with, “I aint got time, to be f**kin with you. always hit me up like you got nothin to do” implying he has hit a level where you need to occupy time with something significant. Though it might sound cocky, Gino reinforces in the second verse, finishing out the track with a strong flow as he does with the final song. Ending the 3 track project in confidence with THINK, askin “Whatchu think ’bout that?” and we are thinking, we want to hear more of HAYWARD & Gino Rose collabs! Stay tuned for a music video release already cooking for BAMBOO, PT 1.