By Alex McMann
Rap Music Journalist
Artist: Abhi the Nomad
Label: Tommy Boy Records
Release Date: February 9, 2018
The Minute I heard “Mama Bling,” I knew I was on the path to something surprisingly excellent. This is exactly how I would describe Abhi the Nomads’ recent musical creation, Marbled, released before being signed to Tommy Boy Records. Legends such as Ghostface Killah, De La Sol, and Method Man have all been a part of this label Abhi now has the privilege of joining. Abhi is excited for the creativity that signing will spur, and is ready to continue to produce more of his own blend of music.
Marbled has created a seamless mix of indie pop and urban through combining traditional synth pop sounds with beat structures that allow for rapping. One song that sticks out to me is “Planes.” The listener is welcomed in with crashing snare hits and a melody carried by the sound of whistles. The rest of the track has a Two Door Cinema Club feel to it through the use of jazz horns and intermittent guitar samples, until a drum beat and walking bass line usher in Abhi’s cue to flow. The namesake for the album, Marbled, is another example of the creativity in this project. Abhi uses synthesized piano keys, snaps, and slight beatboxing to create an indie sounding beat he’s able to rap over. This song sounds joyful, but hides a dark tinge from current and past struggles linked to his constant movement growing up. Abhi says, “binge and drink again, smile and pretend again / Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to rock bottom.”
Living in India, Beijing, Hong Kong, China, Fiji, and California has given Abhi a peek into countless ways people live within known settings. Various musical inspirations ranging from blink-182, to Kanye west, coupled with a nomadic lifestyle, allow Abhi to merge two styles of music previously seen as polar opposites in a tasteful way throughout Marbled. I am excited for his continual growth with Tommy Boy Records, and will be on watch for the release of his next album.