Each week, dozens of singles and a handful of projects are released in the Christian Hip-Hop (CHH) and Urban Soul spaces. Below, we listen to a few highlights and list the rest for your own discovery. As always, follow our New Christian Rap & Hip Hop playlist on Spotify and Apple Music to listen to all the latest.
Marqus Anthony feat. DJ Mykael V - "Portrait" Independent Atlanta-based rapper Marqus Anthony brings forth an extremely solid offering with his latest single titled, "Portrait." The single represents one of those defining moments in his discography, as his personal confidence has continued to strengthen over the years vocally. Avila smashed the production complete with clean drums, mysterious melodies, and popping accents. Anthony presents natural vocal tones and intelligent, God-fearing delivery comfortable in the rhyme pockets throughout. Well-known across the culture, the track also features DJ Mykael V adding his signature stamp of approval. The overall message is quite clear, we're all made in God's image and possess priceless divine value. You can listen to "Portrait" on Spotify here.
Danielle Apicella - "Little Things"
Reflection Music Group's (RMG) Danielle Apicella returns with her first single of 2021. "Little Things" stands alone as one of her strongest vocal performances to date. Besides Apicella's powerful, soothing vocals, the horns are the co-star. If you've spent any time reading my weekly Friday release round-ups, you've come to know how much I love varied instrumentation on a track. Apicella displays another reason why song length matters anymore. With the average length of CHH and Urban Soul tracks topping out around two minutes, little room exists to showcase talent. With this track nearing the four-minute mark, she has room to shine. Her melodies runs, harmonies and soulful vibes collectively are stand out as unique and atop her game. This is one of those "don't miss" releases. Listen to "Little Things" on Spotify here.
I probably Wrote This While Crying by James Gardin
Michigan-based artist James Gardin presents his first project of 2021, a personal and intimate account of his emotional ride through daily life. The project starts with one of its strongest tracks, "All My Life." The track has a universal vibe and message which could easily find placement in movies or streaming television series. it details constant struggles and obstacles faced as personal faith has remained the victor throughout. Gardin's artful form hinges on the fact his music may connect with the personal struggles, failures, trials, and tribulations faced personally. The unique instrumentation stands out on the third track with a bellowing saxophone laying down the mood. Situated in the middle of the project is "Most of My Friends Are Stuck on the Internet," the only single released prior to the project. The track hits home for most, especially throughout the pandemic. The fact we've established digital relationships and miss personal face-to-face connections. Another standout track is "Ten For Ten" featuring Melissa Carter. Trust me, just listen. The entire project feels concept-based, a welcomed approach sorely missed in music these days. It's a solid effort from beginning to end, as a sense of calm and completion fills the heart afterwards. Listen to I probably Wrote This While Crying on Spotify here.