Hip-hop as a culture and an aesthetic is so much grander than the lyrical exchanges the music was built on so many years ago, and I think this is something on Star2’s mind right now. His new single with Lil Poppa, “Real Life,” punctures a hole in the partition between indie pop, hip-hop, trap, and melodic rap, all in the name of expressing raw emotion with a little more moxie than the standard model of these genres would ever allow for. His is a generation intent on reshaping the narrative, and he’s doing his part and then some to contribute in this single.
The percussive thrust doesn’t need a lot of bass behind it to push around the verses, but neither of these players is having it – they’ve each got such a weighty, post-melodic delivery that there’s rarely an instance where it sounds like they’re not the ones forming the tempo with their words.
Watch the video for “Real Life” below
They can rap, they can sing, and best of all they can connect with each other when it actually matters in this performance, setting off warm harmonies that are surprisingly soulful and wise beyond the years these two up and comers have between them at the moment.
There’s a real buzz around “Real Life” right now, and it makes a lot of sense to me. Star2 is hitting the hook with everything he’s got in this single, and while he’s clearly got plenty of room to keep growing as a songwriter, I think Lil Poppa does a lot to demonstrate what both of their abilities can accomplish when they’re in the right setting for rap excellence. This hasn’t been an easy period for hip-hop, but structurally and conceptually I think this performance suggests that there’s a lot of sunny days ahead – all of them likely featuring these two in the spotlight.