Welcome to Sleeper Hit, a new series where we highlight standout gems from recently released projects. The sleeper hit cannot be the obvious choice. The sleeper hit surprises and thrills us. It’s the one without being too loud about it. We hope you enjoy our selections.
You can’t discuss the new New York sound without including A Boogie Wit da Hoodie. His sing-song approach, his guttural writing, and his syrupy vocal make him an irresistible addition to the NYC canon. Standing opposite the likes of Pop Smoke and Sheff G as an ambassador of the city, A Boogie’s sound is a reminder of the diversity and breadth of New York’s baked-in artistry. Up until February 14, 2020, a majority Boogie’s best work lived on a 2016 album entitled Artist.
With the release of Artist 2.0, Boogie storms the scene, four years removed from the prototype. Packed with obvious hits and collabs with DaBaby, Young Thug, Roddy Ricch, Lil Uzi Vert, and more, the sleeper hit of Artist 2.0 is a bleeding solo cut: “Me and My Guitar.”
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Let’s get one thing straight: “Me and My Guitar” is an emo-rap anthem. The pleading plucks of guitar, the creaking vocals, and Boogie’s singing “You can try stealing my heart, it’s already gone…” into the drop, all coming together to get our blood pumping. Boogie slips into some clear-cut raps, but the song really picks up after his breathless bars about snitching and loyalty. Without warning, Boogie’s voice spikes and pierces our collective souls. Hearing Boogie shout “I’m just done” on wax, we can imagine a packed out venue shouting the words back at him with enthusiasm. Call this an emotional trick.
The outro, equally as plucky as the intro, features pitches vocals, and a nice emotive break. Clocking in at two minutes and 41 seconds, “Me and My Guitar” doesn’t overstay its welcome. The song’s length naturally cuts the weight of A Boogie Wit da Hoodie’s delivery. His dark overtones are a welcome step forward in his artistry. A Boogie might be the next artist to master the art of dissonance, pairing glistening melodies with somber undercurrents.
Artist 2.0 is brimming with bangers, but don’t forget about the cutting qualities of “Me and My Guitar.” The song is emo-rap at its finest, a sleeper hit by any name.