N.Ave is a rapper and producer out of Philadelphia who deigns to incorporate a good shot of EDM in his newest EP, Black Magic. With a chilled out yet well-articulated lyrical style, N.Ave’s beats and vocals lend themselves well to both underground hip hop and more popular trap/EDM crossover styles. The four-track EP certainly covers at least those two genres with potential for even more.
The subject matter covered in Black Magic is quite deep and introspective, seeming to consciously stay away from drugs and partying per the usual stuff covered in popular hip hop. In fact, it’s not even fair to compare artists like N.Ave to pop hop; he’s truly a different class, and thank goodness for that. That’s not to say that the tracks on Black Magic aren’t danceable.
The EP’s opening track “Dead Roses” has a pop feel with R&B-style vocals by Nayah adding to this aesthetic. The content of the track is still deep and highly emotive, however, addressing the personal struggles of trying to make it in music while avoiding the pratfalls of fame like drugs and vapid, empty people. This seems to be a common theme for N.Ave, as it extends to “Gravity,” “Dosumdiffrint,” and the EP’s title track. There’s a heightened sense of emotion with N.Ave’s vocal timbre and punch, which has the impact of Jay-Z or Nas and the heartfelt emotion of Mos Def or Common.
It’s a beautiful balance N.Ave strikes with his vocals and production, and really cool when applied to the EDM elements he incorporates. The trancy outro in “Gravity” adds volumes to the evocative storytelling in that track’s lyrics, and then there’s “Dosumdiffrint.” Easily the most EDM-styled track on the EP, “Dosumdiffrint” as produced by Noshadowbeats, and the production style is definitely “diffrint” from N.Ave’s. Trappy, trippy and a little more pop, it shows that N.Ave can be just as impactful spitting over different styles of beats. This track could easily work as a break in a DJ set or could be remixed in about a thousand different ways, likely only increasing its emotional effect.
As a new talent, N.Ave has definitely shown with Black Magic that he has the potential to take hip hop back in the direction of impactful, evocative lyrics which can lend themselves to any beat style. He’s definitely out to make a splash in hip hop and, as often happens, his style may likely spill over even more into EDM. He’ll be a welcome addition if he goes that route.
Black Magic is out now and can be streamed on N.Ave’s SoundCloud page and Spotify. It can also be streamed and purchased on iTunes and Tidal. Check out his website for details including more videos on his first EP, “Black Professional.”