The tension of “Oxytocin” is thick. The harmonic lamenting of Benjamin A.D betrays the deep yearning of a connection that feels one-sided. His vocals grasp the edges of each line with passion, it’s effortless to fall into the tragedy he unravels.
Sit down, sip up. On his single “Codeine,” CeddroDaGod rap-sings about the toxic allure of addiction, but then pulls the rug out from under the listeners expectations by changing the perspective of his vice. The pull of a bad relationship can be just as toxic.
Coming off a #1 hit in Hot97’s WHOSNEXT, Manny Maserati made himself known to the Sauce with “Black Rose.” Inspired by the likes of Nas and Rakim, Manny raps with soul and grit. He doesn’t write to make music, he writes to get the world off his chest.
The best examples of self-producing artists really know how to mesh their vocals and beat in just the right amounts. This smoker’s anthem, “Smoke” by Power features a seamless blending of ad-libs and synthesizer flares to settle the verses in for a smooth ride that keeps the listener ahead of the track.
Deep and personal is how Leo Miyagee raps over the fleeting piano keys of “Paro.” The emotional pull of the instrumental builds on Miyagee’s impassioned vocal delivery with a syllable for every key.
Everything we love about the lo-fi goodness of fika and No Spirit is channeled into instrumental funk on the Reggie Got Beats remix of “Better Now” Ft. RickyAtoms. The remix carefully arranges the track’s melancholy message in a brighter, more hopeful focus on the future.
Another returning artist and growing Sauce favorite, Vallé is back with more of his upbeat rhymes and fun cadence. This time with “Trip Advisor” he brings us back to his Papua New Guinea island roots. No matter where his journeys take him, his family retains a piece of his heart.
There’s an innocent quality to “Phun” by trdml that’s told in the angst of high school nights fighting to fit in and the bonds of those friends who never made you feel like you needed to. The track bends genres and avoids conventional recording methods for a uniquely home-brewed flavor.
There’s an art to autotuned balladry, and Rokeaux is clearly well-versed in the form. Looking for a deep song about the prison of clout chasing or a high-speed flashy banger? “To: Rep” is both.
Eyes closed, headphones on blast is how Anna Nita’s “Cloud Nine” deserves to be heard. She makes R&B sound effortless with her smooth vocals but it’s the feel of a genuine band that brings a one-of-a-kind texture to this slow burner.