The gradual rise of atmospheric, luscious, and ethereal aspects seeping their way into the grander hip-hop landscape has been something of a noted trend throughout the past few years in the genre’s history. With these aspects beginning to play a larger and larger role in the public’s awareness and/or enjoyment of the genre, it’s popularity has resulted in the barries between the aforementioned genre and its ties between r&b and pop slowly and surely merging into something completely nuanced in its own right.
This type of music has essentially no rules or motives to it; no barriers based on region or even influence at that. It’s free-forming and almost undefinable, but that is exactly what purveyors of this genre would like it to be categorized as. And with that being said, no one has been more so at the forefront of this movement in regards to the underground than the Boysnightsout (BNO) collective for the past few years.
This cast of talent, primarily based in Sweden, has utilized infused the concepts of subdued, emotionally-charged thematics into the realms of pure contemporary hip-hop to create these awe-inspiring songs that almost take the listener to a whole different world — a world brought together in its most conclusive and defining state yet with their latest project as a collective entitled It’s Complicated.
Through 16 different songs, they were able to take their audience on an absolute whirlwind of a journey in a musical sense. There’s never a standout dull moment in the tracklisting whatsoever, as even the most soft and downtrodden moments just add to the atmosphere that they work to create from the first moment the album begins all the way to its very end.
Each and every present member of the collective does their best to showcase exactly why they’ve gained the acclaim that’s been given to them amongst the circle of influence that they find themselves in primarily. Their defining, digitized and reverberated voices are put to great use time and time again throughout the project’s runtime — whether that’s through Swoopy’s grand entrance to the fray on the album’s opener “Amazon,” Loveboy’s eclectic performance on “Special,” or Buffalobang’s fleeting and soaring vocals on “Home.” Every single member manifests this approach in one way or another throughout the album, with Sglily, D1v, Lildovas, uknoxoxo, and kbry putting in outstanding performances of their own in this light as well.
The production team on this project also outdid themselves more than their audience could have ever asked for — as each and every instrumental on this project exudes that sense of mystique and atmosphere that is just all-too-characteristic of this collective leading up to an occasion like this. But the work put in by the likes of Opal, With3r, sg37, and others far exceed even their best beats on their most magnificent projects from the past. They all share the common trait of adding to and supplementing the group’s main vocal talents, and that notion is accomplished far beyond a shadow of a doubt on each track given here.
BNO has been waiting to make their mark more than they already have up to this point for such a long time, and considering how influential their sound is to so many young acts – who may or may not even know it given their low profile – this compilation is a statement piece in its entirety for this remarkable group of artists. This is a stepping stone and a landmark moment put together for them; they only have so much more to create from this point forward.