In My Headphones: Rad | Universe
A while back I found out about Rad, a dope Brooklyn emcee that drops bar after of that heat. His album/mixtape Rehearsals is dope, so if you haven’t checked it out yet, ya best get to it. There have been a few days at work that I threw it on repeat for a few hours. There’s not a weak song on that joint, “Movin II” was my favorite. Well Rad is back at it again with “Universe”!
The first time I heard “Universe” I immediately loved it. The song opens up with lush production that sets the tone, mixed with the female vocals on the hook, courtesy of Chelsea Joy Cabrega. Rad’s vocals are also on the hook, they’re both stacked on top of each other, so it has a full sound to it. As a side-note, I really like when male & female artists double each other’s vocals. It just sounds cool to me.
Producer credits for “Universe” go to Yando, while Justin Klatzko mixed & mastered it. I definitely appreciate the fact that Rad takes pride in his production quality. Rehearsals has songs dating back to 2016, and even those have good sound quality. I don’t think it’s a secret that people are naturally drawn to music that is more sonically pleasing.
Rad, The Lyricist
Alright, so I love me a nice, mellow hip hop joint to relax and get lifted to. Above all though, I have a sweet spot for lyricism, so if you can incorporate them both, I’m hooked. I’ve only just starting listening to Rad, but I’ve noticed that he hasn’t compromised his pen game on a single song I’ve heard. Obviously, like any rapper, some songs are themed, and some are more about spittin’ bars.
Okay, she said it’s cool that you appreciate the silence
But don’t paint too many pictures on the insides of your eyelids
Don’t forget to look, don’t forget to see
Don’t forget to look, and don’t forget to be
Set sail and steer on the ocean of those tears
From that crying that you hear and you’ll see
Half of those tears were of joy, it’s not all it appears
Those tears were of joy, it’s not all it appears
Now, look into the eyes of those lies that you hear
And I think you’ll be surprised that, half of all those lies were
Rooted in fear, it’s not all it appears
They were rooted in fear, it’s not all it appears
I realize that’s a pretty chunky quote, but I really like this part. The metaphors and repetition felt like a good way to wrap up the song, giving the song some structure and a conclusion of sorts.
Other Thoughts on Rad…
You know, something I haven’t really mentioned yet is Rad’s voice. I know this a pretty subjective topic, but I think Rad has an impressively palatable rapping voice. Like I said before, I had Rehearsals on repeat for hours and didn’t get tired of listening to him. Maybe it’s the Brooklyn in him, who knows? Some artists have unique voices, but they fatigue my ears, like Ludacris, Hopsin, or even Eminem’s new stuff.
Rad’s also been making moves out in New York, besides his online hustle. He recently performed at SOB’s in New York City, opening up for Manny Wave. He’s also co-headlining a show coming up in Brooklyn. On April 19th, he and Famelife (@callmefamelife on IG) will be performing, so if you’re in the BK area and want to check it out, follow them for more details. You gotta hit the DM’s to get the address, it’s not public info right now.