Philly rapper Lushlife gets abstract on "The Waking World" - WXPN
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Lushlife | Photo by Ebru Yildiz ebruyildiz.net | courtesy of the artist

Hat-tip to our buds at The Deli for spotting the latest teaser track from Philly rapper Lushlife‘s eagerly-anticipated new record Ritualize. The record, due out in February on Western Vinyl, is a collaboration between Lush and the suave production outfit CSLSX – and the vibes were intense on “Body Double,” the first single from the album. On this new one, the Swedish outfit I Break Horses joins the party, and the backdrop is murky and mysterious, with bursts of intensity – it’s like the punk rock quiet-loud-quiet approach taken to a hip-hop extreme.

As Lushlife main man Raj Haldar tells The Line of Best Fit, the song uses an infamous character in rock history as a vehicle for traveling way inwards and then back out:

The Waking World’ is a surreal look at the mindset of Mark David Chapman on the morning he assassinates John Lennon. The frenetic quiet-then-loud production from CSLSX, and I Break Horses’ anthemic but melancholy chorus offered the perfect backdrop to zoom in and spit rhymes that explore my own relationship to depression, adolescent sensitivity, and obsession in the context of a single culture-altering moment.

It totally comes through in nuanced, vivid descriptions. My favorite couplet: “I’m at the bar alone / sippin’ la fin du monde.” Give it a listen below and look for Ritualize when it drops on February 19th.

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