Mavi “Smh” – Single Review
Charlotte rapper Mavi is one of the best artists out right now. Bar for bar, Mavi doesn’t waste a breath as he packs chapters of knowledge, experience, and perspective into a single verse. Mavi’s skill set is on full display in his electrifying return with “Smh,” his first solo offering of 2020.
Mavi’s exceptional 2019 project Let the Sun Talk saw the then-20-year old rapper prophetically analyzing concepts of mind, body, and soul through beautiful lyrical poetry. His new track “Smh” offers much of the same, his vocals drifting over a smoky, knocking beat. Mavi’s music demands a close ear, with a cadence so smooth that you might miss one of the many knowledge darts he drops along the way.
“And mans demands is taking tolls on transit / Chances paved with gold the same we stole for hand to hand / The blame float over our heads / We cradle the clangs of drone from our beds the same as soldiers”
Rather than showcase autotuned braggadocio to appeal to mainstream clout, Mavi brings us in tune with reality, forcing the listener to confront life and all the beauty and cruelty it has to offer.
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A music video for “GOOD / SMH” was released in late October, though the former of the two tracks has yet to appear on streaming services. Directed by REVENXNT, the video isn’t overcomplicated, simply profiling Mavi with a concrete jungle backdrop to let his gospel shine through.
This new music feels more like Mavi is coming into his own voice, rather than replicating the vibe of his influences.
Dom Maiorca is a writer and filmmaker from Los Angeles, CA. He graduated from UCLA where he studied Psychology and Film & TV while contributing frequently to The Paper Mixtape, an independent student-run magazine. He loves talking about music and movies and is always looking for new recommendations for both. Some of his favorite artists include Childish Gambino, Toro y Moi, Tyler, the Creator, KAYTRANADA, Gorillaz, and many more.