Tkay Maidza knows how to make a tune. She always has, and something tells me that she always will. From the moment she bombarded onto the scene in 2013 with ‘Brontosaurus’, she had people ecstatically singing and dancing along with her right through to her debut album ‘TKAY’ in 2016 and again with the hyped hip-hop moment ‘Flexin’ in 2018. But as time has evolved, so has her artistry. Her sound has gravitated from her dance experimentation back to her hip-hop roots as she channels the music she listens to daily and the stories that she wants to tell as a songwriter.
‘Last Year Was Weird (Vol 1) was a great re-introduction to who Maidza wants to be as an artist. It stripped things back to her roots. She hyped people up with the hip-hop heavy ‘Flexin’ featuring Duckwrth and then she got a little vulnerable with ‘White Rose’ and ‘Growing Up’ as she explored a candid SZA influence. And Vol 2 is promised to be just as confessional and just as pure as it’s preceder.
Kicking off the release period with the anthem ‘Awake’, this heavy hip-hop influenced track has become the heart of the energy in her live show over the past year. With audiences walking away from her set screaming the lyrics to this then-unreleased track and questioning when she was finally going to release it, it was obvious that she had something special. It just embodies this freshness in the production that immediately resonates with the listener as something different and stands out above the rest. It’s a hype track that explodes in her live set but also still manages to capture that heavy and raw energy in the studio version which is not an easy feat.
Exploring her insomnia, she explains how she’s still wide awake past 3am and can be reached at anytime because she’s always awake and working away at ideas. “24/7 I’d be wired, 365 I’m alive. Late night, probably awake. Text me, probably awake. FaceTime, probably awake”. It’s such a fun and hype idea that you can’t help but be on board with it immediately.
Maidza also has a strong ear for music and manages to collaborate with artists just before they blow up (cc Duckwrth). And for this song she’s teamed up with Jpegmafia for a verse, and the Baltimore rapper absolutely kills it. Adding a different contrast to Maidza’s delivery, he also adds to energy with ease.
‘Awake’ is a tune and a half and welcomes Tkay Maidza back with open arms. Get ready to have this song on repeat.