The weather’s getting colder, and that can mean many different things depending on who you ask. For a large number of people, that means they’re looking for some smooth R&B music to vibe out to, perhaps with someone they’re trying to get lucky with or already have. Enter Louisville slugger Mandell Harrison.
Just this week, the 21-year-old rapper and producer decided to drop off a four-track EP titled Baby. Now that could be a reference to what he calls a lady or what he’s trying to create with her but the woozy, sensual project certainly favors the latter. He kicks things off with the track “Ride it” which samples the hook from 2010 smash “Ride” by the ever so talented Ciara featuring rap legend Ludacris. He throws some 808s and hi-hats behind the songstress’s tantalizing chorus and backs her up before taking things over on his own.
He levitates along that beat before moving on to the slightly more uptempo “sensual.” It has a distinctly Caribbean feel to it and doubles as a track you could dance to in a function or speed things up in the bedroom. The melody is contagious, and transitions right into “flourish” where Harrison slows things down yet again.
He’s spitting game to a fair maiden, letting her know what the deal is and inviting her to come home with him. It’s like the cool down lap you have to do at the end of track practice. You know things are about to be over for the night, so you’re trying to end things on a strong note. And then the final track, “push” comes through to finishing things off.
“Remember what you had when you don’t have nobody.” These words toward the end really hit home. Though the project as a whole feels very catered to knocking boots, this track features a more vulnerable and emotional Mandell. He’s war-torn, jaded, and confident that the girl he doesn’t have at that moment will never find anyone like him if anyone at all.
The four tracks are surely evocative, and the reality of the EP is six minutes and 12 seconds may be disappointing for those who really get into the flow only for it to finish abruptly. It’s admirable of a young artist to really focus in on ensuring each song is quality, as opposed to loading up “fillers” on a long project to maximize streams. Additionally, the short songs play to the attention spans of millennial fans and feel less contrived than songs following standard formats. Perhaps he read our article on The Art of Incomplete Songs.
The up and comer has a strong work ethic, evident in the fact his 10-track EP liar dropped just 2 months previously. Bryson Tiller has yet to drop his album, so perhaps it’s time for someone else to take the Louisville throne for the time being. Stream Mandell Harrison’s Baby EP below.