Strap yourselves in, here comes TT with the zesty, sub 3 minute Broke!
Starting with a sample of dialogue lifted from Back to the Future that references the famous DeLorean, we then quickly learn that ‘I bought a car that I can’t afford’. Ill-advisedly living on credit that we can’t afford to maintain is going to be something that a lot of people can relate to in these aspirational times.
The trap-flavoured hip-hop beat also features an instrument voice that sounds like a flute-flavoured mellotron stepping through a hooky melody that provides a pretty counterpoint to TT’s flow. His rap is tight and is enhanced and augmented with spot effects, octaves and vocoder melodies that add colour and interest.
The subtle mix makes sure these extra vocals don’t feel gimmicky: they’re on the edge of listening for the majority of the time.
There’s an extra ‘na na na’ backing vocal hook which mirrors the flute voice and tops and tails a track which skips along, very light and elegant on its feet. The overall feel and choice of melody and harmony seem to be steeped in distinctly Eastern influences, and it would be easy to imagine some appropriate ethnic instruments are playing within the mix, right around the corner…
‘Doing my job / It’s a 9 to 5 / But I don’t get paid / It’s a vibe’ – there’s a real economy to the lyric and delivery of Broke’s message. The mechanical nature of the beat and the repetition of the ‘na na na’ break is perhaps meant to echo the repetition and monotony of the 9 to 5 cycle that this lifestyle requires.
Broke’s message is elegantly communicated here, and the smart production and mixing makes the aspirational-lifestyle cage a highly polished and attractive one.