Following recent kudos earned from the knockout record Good Vibes, and the video for it, Amaru Muru has his newest 5-track EP lined up for this Sunday - the 9th of August - titled New Levels.
Muru’s video for Good Vibes sees the Southampton-based emcee sporting an Illmatic XX t-shirt, a good match for the Lovemade-produced instrumental that features mbira notes reminiscent of Nas’ One Love that get layered with a melodic feminine vocal sample. That record has topped 40,000 views on YouTube alone, which makes it the most-watched video on Lovemade Music’s channel yet.
Though Good Vibes doesn’t feature on Muru’s unreleased EP New Levels, it is a sign of things to come - an experiment of note in the new music is Muru’s venture into the world of autotune. Despite this being an area Muru previously avoided, he pulled it off in the hook for Good Vibes and the futuristic vocal inflections can be found from the offset in the EP’s intro track Do It Again.
Track 1 after the aforementioned intro Do It Again features the only leaked material from the EP, a track titled New One which had its music video dropped on Lovemade’s YouTube channel on July 19th. That video passed 9,000 views in a fortnight and features an autotuned Muru bridge. New One’s video continues to climb in numbers, which is exciting to see as the Lovemade posse settle into a sound and show direction in attracting their tribe.
Level Up serves as a half-time head-bop
The third on the tracklist - track 2 - Level Up, is undeniably a vibe. Delicately autotuned vocals bless this track by harmonising with the melodic instrumental, leading us to believe that this could be a defining sound for Muru going forward. With this track’s duration at just 2 minutes 45 seconds, Level Up serves as a half-time head-bop before diving into the epic back end of this EP.
Surfboard, listed as Track 3 of the EP, sets Muru off on a braggadocious attack on his haters, claiming: “Man they really jel, man they really jel // Tryna bring man down like it’s NFL”. The instrumental, produced by MCK - like all songs on both this EP as well as Wine & Dine, the feel-good 5-track street-romantic EP released back in February - gives Surfboard short, punchy synthetic string notes that create a Meek Mill-type ‘fight music’ ambience for Muru’s indirect diss track.
Though we know that this isn’t the case, Muru’s EP finale titled Round 2 feels like a track recorded for the Wine & Dine EP that was just a little too rough and gnarly to include on that particular EP - for Anderson .Paak fans, something akin to what Oxnard is to Ventura. This track features the most autotune from Muru, which begs the question: from the days of L.U.S.T Part 2 (2018), which displayed a pick’n’mix of instrumental and vocal styles from g-funk (Feel The Sun), chill hop (Music Makes You Feel Alive), afrobeats (Grind), as well as others; could the new style illustrated through 2020 thus far be a more consistent sound for Amaru Muru and the Lovemade Collective going forward? Or, will they still dabble and prove their versatility to produce great music across a range of genres and sub-genres?
Lovemade have one of the highest ceilings
Time will tell the answer to those questions, though the new sound seems to have worked so far with the likes of Good Vibes and New One making record YouTube views for Lovemade Music. Besides, it doesn’t matter too much what genre the music is from the Lovemade trio. Of all the collectives in the country, Lovemade have one of the highest ceilings and it’s only a matter of time before everything clicks - making their journey one of the best to watch on the SOuthside. Amaru Muru as the de facto leader is now proving his worth with a steady output and an exciting new sound to boot.
The EP set to release this Sunday, New Levels - the title for which seems to be a blend of New One and Level Up, songs whereby the former precedes the latter on the tracklist, though that could be a coincidence - features 5 incredibly enjoyable tracks that show the progression of both MCK as a producer and Amaru Muru as an emcee, that we mustn't allow to be swept under the rug like the previous EP Wine & Dine.
Want to read more on Lovemade? Check out our article on Why Lovemade’s Wine & Dine is Criminally Underrated.
Click here or the artwork below to pre-order New Levels - official release August the 9th, 2020!