Nosaj Thing shows off his cross genre talents on his fourth studio album Parallels
On September 8, electronic music producer Nosaj Thing released his fourth studio album, Parallels, under the Timetable Records music label. Known largely as a producer, the Korean-American artist Nosaj Thing has made it big as an electronic music producer, and has even garnered a name for himself in the hip-hop industry working as a producer for artists such as Kendrick Lamar, Chance The Rapper, and Kid Cudi. Although Parallels is largely a showcase of Nosaj Thing’s work in the electronic music genre, it contains elements of both hip-hop and R&B.
The album opens up with the dreamy track, “Nowhere.” The song is a fitting introduction to the chill, melodic, electronic album, and features a lulling piano number layered with an atmospheric melody. The atmospheric vibe is continued into the next track, “All Signs Point Back To You,” which features vocals by Kevin Spacek. There are minimalist drum patterns on the song and the instrumentation consists largely of hauntingly beautiful melodies layered behind the soft soulful croon of Spacek.
The following track, “Form,” is slightly less spacey and picks up the tempo a small bit with some of its more upbeat synths, but it is right back to the light, dream-like vibe on the next track, “How We Do,” which features vocals from Kazu Makino. This track has a deep, dark, melodic feel to it and Kazu Makino’s chilly ethereal vocals make make this an absolutely beautiful song.
“U G,” the next song on the album utilizes chopped samples, a technique commonly used in hip-hop production, to create a trippy experience for the listener. The melodies in the background have a trip-hop feel to them although the beat pattern feels naked with the absence of a kick drum. In “Get Like,” Nosaj Thing makes great use of powerful kick drums and slick hats and snares. Here listeners get a great taste of Nosaj Thing’s skills as a hip-hop producer and the drum patterns are intertwined nicely among the melodic loops and samples.
Another highlight of this album comes two tracks later with the song, “Way We Were.” The dreamy atmospheric essence is once again revisited and is this time accompanied with the light soulful vocals of Zuri Marley. Nosaj Thing once again flexes his musical skills on this track by featuring an alternative R&B style combined with his electronic melodies.
This album is a great piece of work from Nosaj Thing and shows off his skills as a music producer across genres. The electronic, hip-hop, and R&B influences on the album make this one a great listen for fans of any of these genres.