Listen: SBTRKT & Raury Exhibit Versatility On “Higher”


SBTRKT stands to make serious waves with the impending release of his forthcoming full length, Wonder Where We Land. After upping excitement through the early release of a talent-loaded tracklist and fantastic singles assisted by Sampha and Ezra Koenig, the masked legend returns. This time, SBTRKT stands beside the widely trumpeted young artist of the moment, Raury. Whereas “Temporary View” meshed subdued electronics with Sampha’s soulful tone, and “New Dorp. New York” escorted Vampire Weekend’s lead vocalist through a jungle of congo drums and tropical funk, the latest offering fittingly falls within a decidedly hip-hop framework.

“Higher,” and its brooding, raps-sandwiching anthem of a chorus, is one of Raury’s better outings. The hook, which swells in register and emphasis, will penetrate all your mind’s defenses. The beat’s slight touches—summer crickets and a whirling synth intro as grand as an M83 song—make for the track’s most memorable moments. SBTRKT is, to the surprise of probably no one, doing his thing and doing it well. While much of Raury’s quick-spit flows grow a bit tedious and banal, a few choice lines shine bright: “Walking with a limp around the city of the kid, use a fake ID to buy some cigarettes from the bodega/ate a pack of bad karma didn’t pay for Now & Laters, but my life is full of sufferings that happen now or later.”

I’m a big fan of Raury’s music, but the praise has certainly begun to snowball a bit—something I’m guilty of myself. How are you feeling about the Atlanta upstart? Let us know below. You can peep “Higher” below and preorder Wonder Where We Land on iTunes here. The project drops Oct. 7 through Young Turks.

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