Fresh from the brand new 2021 album CursedbyCupid, Superstar drives with an aptly creative bass-line and nostalgic rhythm, introducing the Maalthepsalmist sound in a retro yet stylish way.
Blending pop and RnB sentiments with a meandering vocal that’s gentle and occasionally near-falsetto, Superstar stands tall on the strength of its rising hook melody and the vintage nature of the arrangement.
Maalthepsalmist strikes as being influenced by all manner of artists from a simpler era – Prince, MJ, D’Arby, to name just a few. The softness is unique to this singer right now though, and the song-writing feels decidedly pop-like in its broadness and accessible concept. Elsewhere, however, the musicality leans in a more alternative direction for the times, and this balance works in favour of identity.
The rest of the album blends genres in a similarly free yet focused fashion. Don’t Holla at Me, as an example, feels like a hip hop track, but sees a stunted melody paired with a backing riff to further reinstate that Maalthepsalmist style. Then we get a song like I’m Your Baby, within which the artist hints at more of a contemporary edge – a touch of The Weeknd in the breathy long-form progressions and the intimate story-line.
Chillin’ In The Park is an easy highlight for its jazz-café vibe and the simple, soothing imagery and melody. The soundscape of Keep Fallin’ in Love also stands out for its summertime, festival-ready groove and classic Bob Marley reference.
Whether the moment is of a mellow and shoulder-swaying nature, or something a little more high-energy and late-night-ready, Maalthepsalmist carries it well. The songs throughout this album prove consistently in keeping with his personality and creative reach. An artist with a clear purpose and tone to his work.