‘Chant’ is So Nice Yesterday’s Sunday morning record

Hazy and weary, the Baltimore duo does an after-party reflection on their latest EP.
mynameisblueskye
mynameisblueskye
A singer-songwriter from Boston, MA that also writes blogs about music from time to time. A loud and proud as fuck member of the Alt-Black, LGBT and autistic community.

Baltimore’s hip-hop twosome So Nice Yesterday, consisting of producer Thom Castles and rapper/singer Tiara Harris aka Berko Lover, knows how to build a vibe and tell a story. While most bands try to make music that sounds like a fun soundtrack for your party, So Nice Yesterday brings the party to your ears—not just the quality liquor and the music but the hangovers, the sexual tension in the room, and the singing off-key to the latest chart banger. And their latest EP, Chant, continues to bring the atmosphere of a party—this time, from a grown and tired perspective. Where 2016’s Best Party Ever is a version with drops of different liquors spilled on tables and floors, Chant is more laid-back, with strawberry weed smoke in the air. Or, perhaps, Chant is even the Sunday morning to BPE’s Saturday night out.

The first track, “Visions,” finds MC Castles opening the project with smoky reggae/dub sounds, while Harris matches the ambiance with lyrics about failing to overcome one’s insecurities and all of the sleepless nights caused by it. Uncertainty drips into this song and the bossanova track “Lie to Me” as they address relationships that are toxic yet convenient. On the former, Harris asks, “Since it’s all said and done, did you ever love me some?” Then, she goes further with mentions of jealousy in “Lie to Me.” She asks, “Did you get your daily dose of misery?” before coming together with Castles to mourn relationships where no one is at their best, but at least the sex is good.

On both albums, SNY has instrumentals that help the story progress. Where BPE’s “Pancakes” was a kaleidoscopic, celebratory afro house track, “Scoop” is much more seductive and hazy. No less explosive, but pulling off a sexy factor with shimmering electric piano arpeggios and the slow trap drums. Both instrumentals hint at the moment you start getting lost in the party atmosphere, but not too much control is lost on “Scoop” compared to “Pancakes.”

The album’s last two songs confirm that Sunday morning feeling. “Ain’t That Type of Party” uses guitar licks, spare drum patterns, and horns to evoke such sentiments as Harris sings, “The smell of rain woke me up / the Sprite and scotch fucked me up.” The turning point in the track comes when she finishes to get her “mind right in gold.” But before that fully happens, the album closes with digital disco track, “Good Lord,” where Harris may boredly observe the girls  “eating each other’s pussies” and “cheat[ing] on their man’s.” Again, she and Castles team up to make memories of the night before and the night to come.

Chant is the sound of two party-going friends who used to party as hard as their bodies could handle and still do but now allow more time for personal introspection and improvement. This album was a long time coming, and it is only five songs long, but the twosome managed to make those five songs feel like a worthy cap on the last one.

Chant is the sound of two party-going friends who used to party as hard as their bodies could handle and still do but now allow more time for personal introspection and improvement. This album was a long time coming, and it is only five songs long, but the twosome managed to make those five songs feel like a worthy cap on the last one. And thanks to producer PeaceRussie, there’s a recently released companion remix album named Chant+ out, which is not to be missed or ignored.

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