Sounding confident, if full of self-doubt, young hip-hop performer pours his soul onto bouncy beats and takes off.
Two years down the road from “Sheridan Carter Crane” – his eponymous debut, a result of a sorrowful period which followed his mother’s passing – this artist seems to have decided the beginning was too personal on a lot of levels and that was a perfect time to be moving on, until another bout of heartbreak intervened, so “On Myself” turned out almost as intimate as its predecessor. Almost – because, by shortening his signature to first name only and adding a layer of grime to the EP’s eight tracks, the San Francisco-based singer and producer tried to mask genuine feelings and, fortunately for the listener, failed.
If he didn’t, there wouldn’t be the sentimental titular ballad, the record’s majestically confessional finale, where piano ushers in Sheridan’s velvet vocals which get drenched in strings before beats take over its hypnagogic drift and fizzle out after a violin arrived on the scene, but this cut’s touching sentiment will contrast the album’s start. “Where’s The Ref” is much angrier, the youngster’s electronica-stricken monologue alienating those who aren’t on one page with him – yet BDT Don Pablo and Drae V surely are, and their input drives madness into the silky voice and enchanting tune of “The Don” that’s still not as surprising as an acoustic strum on “Hell”: the memorable number baring, despite some expletives, the soft aspect of hip-hop, while the twangy “Like You Did” introduces folksy belligerence and crystalline vibes to the flow.
All this makes the presence of flute on “Walk Away” quite logical, even though the piece per se should purvey fatigue – a state that’s easy to relate to. Which is why “On Myself” just can’t be too personal; which is why it’s precious.