Pop Wallace is a R&B/pop artist and producer from Carlow, Ireland. His latest single “Out Sick” is in collaboration with Dublin pop-synth artist Boyfrens. Pop Wallace is currently based in Phoenix, Arizona. Some of his musical influences include Frank Ocean, Joji, Brockhampton, D’Angelo, Kelis, Justine Timberlake, Blue Hawaii, Craig David, No Rome, Crumb, DIIV , and Kean Kavanagh.
After moving to the US after meeting his American wife, he sort of strayed away from his passion of music but felt inspired again during the lockdown. In 2020 he co-found Poxy Records, an Irish based music collective. His style is described as a blend of emotionally-charged pop and contemporary R&B with a dash of dark whit. Pop Wallace previously had a completely different sound in the early 2010s when he was apart of an act that was featured on RTE’s The Republic of Telly.
“I left space. I wanted a feature on this,” Wallace says of the track. Pop Wallace met Boyfrens when Soft Boy Records producer Gaptoof ran a series of ‘beat battles’ on Facebook in early 2021 to bring Irish musicians together online during COVID. Gaptoof issued a sample, and producers had one week to reimagine it as a new song. The best songs were placed on a mixtape sold on Bandcamp, with proceeds going to MASI (Movement of Asylum Seekers in Ireland).
Listen to “Out Sick” by Pop Wallace below
Pop Wallace has a really smooth voice that glides well with the dreaminess of the song. It starts off with a the music slowly starting and a phone ringing. The music starts to speed up and his voice comes in singing “I’ve been starting at the ceiling, I’ve been swallowing these feelings, All these things that I can’t deal with, Here’s my demons, Season’s Greetings. I think I might call out sick soon, I think I might call out sick soon.” I love the incorporation of the phone ringing and the theme of calling out sick. It’s fun and a song you could definitely hear on a night out, but it is also serious with themes most people can relate to.
This song isn’t about your average cold and calling out sick. The song brings up the pain of the past, not being heard, and feeling left out of the future. The chorus could of been taken as a joke, as the verses describe such deep thoughts and feelings. The music picks up a happier sound which gives hope to the lyrics that are searching for meaning and a change of pace.
Pop Wallace’s fun pop sound mixed with his mature lyrics and voice go so well together. One of his influences is Frank Ocean and I see some similarity between them. I’ve heard Frank Ocean songs in a variety of settings and like Pop Wallace’s music, it just has a way to mold itself into anywhere. The music and chorus are catchy and the rest of the song leaves you thinking about your life. I’m really excited to see what else Pop Wallace comes out with.