While not (yet) an easily recognizable face on the “mainstream R&B” scene, the Summer of 2017 ensured that Brent Faiyaz’s voice is anything but forgettable. While almost everyone I know has been shoulder bopping to the catchy hook Brent laid down for Goldlink’s D.C GoGo infused platinum single “Crew”, what I’m finding is that many don’t know Brent Faiyaz has dropped perhaps one of the most grounded and raw R&B albums of 2017. Brent’s star has been on a steady, gradual rise since the release of his 2016 EP A.M. Paradox. The ingenious move to link up with producers Dpat and Atu to form the group Sonder only helped to hone his sound.
R&B Fans Say Yes To Brent Faiyaz
The Sonder Son Experiment
While A.M. Paradox and the Into EPs Brent released with his group Sonder leaned on adoration of the female form and relationship issues, Sonder Son is highly autobiographical and a good bit of the storytelling is retrospective. It is a narrative on youth, coming of age, and the thin string tying maturity and innocence together. Sonder Son seems to have no ulterior radio play motives, no rehashed formula, and no specific genre or sub-genre staking claim to it. It comes off almost like an experiment. While some of the subject matter is melancholy and serves hard truths, the production for Sonder Son is a highly textured and colorful backdrop for Faiyaz’s haunting vocals and lyrics about being flat broke, searching for a means to accomplish a goal, questioning his circle and even slighted homage to the city of L.A. Every single track on Sonder Son is captivating and transparent so I’m patiently waiting for visuals. In the meantime, spin my favorite tracks from the project below. The entire Sonder Son album is available on all major streaming services.
Sit Down With These Standout Tracks
First World Problemz / Nobody Carez:
One of the first tracks that caught my ear; it’s a testament to camaraderie and personal attitude that eases the tough times with Brent singing, “I don’t even whine bout my paycheck. I know it’s short but ‘ll make ends.” Mood, right?! A little angst, spoken word and smooth production yields the exceptional portrait that Nobody Carez presents.
Talk 2 U:
Approach is everything sometimes and Brent comes correct on this old school R&B flavored joint. The lyrically vivid imagery of a “pretty brown frame” is something straight out of a Dru Hill or Chico Debarge song and we needed this thowback of a snapshot.
One of the more raw and vulnerable tracks on Sonder Son, Brent leaves no room for interpretation. If you weren’t around when he was down and out, don’t call him now that he’s on.
words by V i V