You should’ve heard about Saba by now. Since appearing on Chance The Rapper’s now-iconic Acid Rap project, the 19-year-old artist and leader of Chicago’s newest Hip-Hop clique, PIVOT, has reinvigorated his art while preparing for the release of his upcoming project, COMFORTzone.
In teasing the project, yesterday he premiered “Burnout,” one of the lead singles from the upcoming mixtape . The song features two artists I pegged as ‘artists to look out for’ back in January and the vocal stylings of the talented, TSS favorite Eryn Allen Kane set the pace for the track, which is a leap for Saba.
It’s an appropriate departure from his college-induced raps on his 2013 release GETComfortable. “Burnout” finds Saba ruminating over the Justin Jackson production about the people and the observations he has come across in his just over two decades on earth.
“I used to run home, I was scared to walk, people bled at dark/It’s funny we play with chalk, and then lay in chalk/Foreshadow the shadows, it’s more cattle for tattles”
For the past couple of years the country at large in tune with Hip-Hop raved over the ‘gritty’, ‘raw’ explanations of Chicago violence by ‘drill’ artists. Meanwhile, on the north side a more important movement has been brewing that eschews gunshots for poetic renderings of what life could be and where it stands. Saba makes sense to be in the position he is and “Burnout” is a great example of how an artist can report on the plights of his city while doing so with thoughtful candor.
Saba’s COMFORTzone releases on July 15th.