From an instrumental perspective, there’s no denying the prowess Luigui Bleand’s hook for the new single “Gomelo” enjoys this March, and one could make the case for this being the most sophisticated pop track this rapper has released thus far. Never one to reject the basic fundamentals of pop songwriting simply to sound harder than the competition, Bleand puts a lot of energy into driving the melodic ribbonry home to us in “Gomelo,” skewing hard-hitting lyricism with a tendency to lean on the harmonies in a way that most rappers just don’t have the capacity to support.
His voice is the star of the show here, no matter what he happens to be doing with it, and although there’s certainly nothing simplistic or bleached about the structure of this track, it’s completely devoid of the props and filler that have become terribly commonplace in hip-hop of all kinds these days. This isn’t an artist who wants to make a name for himself based on synthetics, but instead through craftsmanship that was at one time the core standard for everyone in pop, no matter the style or the background of the player.
If Luigui Bleand’s primary goal in this single was to sell us on his urgent nature as a performer, you could say that he hit the nail on the head with “Gomelo.” Instead of wrapping his verse around the beat, he’s ahead of the percussion in this mix and setting up a tempo with little more than his rapid enunciation, which on its own creates a sense of chase as we move from the main beat into the chorus.
He isn’t running from something in this track, but instead encouraging our pursuit of the hook alongside him, which is something I hear a lot of his peers trying to do in similar songs but consistently falling short of the mark. I love how relaxed Bleand’s whole attitude is in this piece, alluding to a comfortability with the microphone that can neither be taught nor earned on the stage or in the studio. This beat isn’t busy but rather heavy for what most vocalists of his caliber would be able to contend with, but, then again, this isn’t a standard singer/rapper/producer/songwriter we’re talking about in “Gomelo.”
It’s not surprising to me as a rap fan and a dedicated music critic that Luigui Bleand’s getting the love from the press and fans that he is in 2022, and with the kind of heat he’s producing in this track it’s reasonable to assume that breaking through the mainstream isn’t going to be nearly as hard for him as it will be some of his rivals in the underground today. His scene is facing a significant moment in its history, as artists begin to come out of the woodwork and join a growing American mainstream hungry for talent that defies the status quo by leaps and bounds, and from what I can tell here, Bleand is ready to take his place at the forefront of this movement.
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