Xander McGowan leads with a heavy simplicity on this single Plastic, introducing his skills as a producer and indeed an artist in a somewhat humble yet unexpectedly intense manner.
Plastic is a fairly spacious track to begin with, a mellow trap beat and a rhythmically minimalist rap delivery create a dark and entrancing pulse that’s quick to connect with the listener. That vocal tone and the overall smokey yet warm finish of the soundscape present an intriguing vibe. By the half-way point, you’re completely lost in the moment – even with the track’s simplicity, there’s a professionally fine-tuned feel to the whole thing, so you’re inclined to sit back and let the moment embrace you in the way that down-tempo EDM might.
Initially that rap vocal feels like purely another instrument, the voice is relentlessly on form when it comes to flow and keeping up with the pace of the music. It’s only really during the latter half that the lyrics start to stand out, and then with each re-visit – with a second and third listen – you’ve acclimatized to that hypnotic beat and so the lyrics really start to connect all the more notably.
These short, poetic lines seem disconnected at first, but as you pay closer attention to the verses, the hook gains a little more clarity as a consequence. Soon enough, the careful balancing between that which is vaguely contemporary, and that which is deeply personal, starts to shine all the more brightly. You appreciate the quiet and calming groove of the track, the thoughtful mood inspires a peaceful level of consideration, and you also appreciate the lyrical precision and the actual story-line that led to its creation.
That addictive aura is subtle but ultimately strong, so much so that the overwhelming weight of silence of the outcry of a louder, more attention-thirsty song afterwards is a little too hard to handle. An impressive release, hopefully there’s more to come.