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Thriving in collages: A review of tg.blk’s “demos from my messy room”

Thriving in collages: A review of tg.blk’s “demos from my messy room”

By Lawal Salami

tg.blk shows off her deep desires by playing on lyrical hoops and soulful hums on tunes she created in her bedroom, liberating her sounds to fly freely in various volume ranges. Diverse in tempo, delivery and collaborations,her recently released EP in which she collates these playful sounds, titled demos from my messy room, contains vivid and abstract concepts that make you picture her surrounded by a sort of assorted mood board.

This Maryland-based rapper of Kenyan origin gets us excited as we get drawn into a vignette of several cut-outs and objects spread across the floors and surfaces of a dishevelled apartment. 

There are unwashed plates in the corner, piles of clothes on the bed, a mangled rug on the floorboard, feelings held as flowers for weeks dying in the water pot, green weed rolled into brown tobacco paper, lit and burning grey like sage at the centre of all these elements. These are the forms and emotions that tg.blk draws the energy curated in this playlist from. 

In 301 *** ***, she raps about her pain at losing love, saying that she “ain’t never felt like this before.” Pain is foreign to her character, and she rejects it as quickly as she admits it. But this hurt doesn’t mean an end to her attraction. On Come to Mine, she further explores the sonic possibility of a party where nothing else would seem to exist but her and her naked lover. 

At the in-betweens of the tape, we find Caprisun, a groovy rhythm that is chopped, bar for bar. On this track, it is clear that her cravings are love and warmth. However, they can be replaced by a psychedelic trip that she doesn’t want to end. There is also Patience which features a soundbite from Gilda (1946).

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At a single listen, one might find a trippy tape, an add-on for a journey to the moon, and a couple of hip anthems. But this isn’t the entire truth.

The demos from tg.blk’s messy room are more soulful and sensational than they can be given credit for. And a more defining picture here would exhibit the valuable lessons and successful sonic experiments that tg.blk should be proud of. It contributes significantly to classical hip-hop and finds listeners on the sort of easy frequency that trails an enjoyable experience.


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