Novice Principles

AlbumsREVIEWED: Brent Faiyaz – WASTELAND


Brent Faiyaz has long been a wonder in music. From the early days of Sonder to his breakthrough feature on Goldlink’s Crew and an inspired performance on his 2020 project, F**k The World, his trajectory has steadily risen.

Being an independent artist can make a stable surge increasingly difficult but Faiyaz has perfected the formula. His craftiness and wordsmith capabilities have made him a R&B powerhouse.

As thrilling as Christopher Nolan films are, there’s an insightful, dark and seductive element about each that hooks audiences. Inception, Tenet & Interstellar all carry such a feat.

Similar in characteristic is WASTELAND; The latest addition to the Maryland native’s evolving catalog which solidifies him as one of music’s biggest names.

Faiyaz provides listeners with a cinematic presentation filled with a variety of honest lyricism, dark world production & 3 momentous skits fitting of the occasion.

Each record is its own scene to a sensual thriller in which Faiyaz narrates from his point of view the complexities of his world; It’s seemingly provocative but sums the overall tone of the album. The depths of the project stretch lengths into a euphoric escape of extensive thoughts and vices.

VILLAIN’S THEME is quite the exposition of WASTELAND as the opening number. We witness Faiyaz describing the ideals of his music; Temporary Euphoria, as he recites.

The storytelling on WASTELAND is phenomenal. Records like LOOSE CHANGE, ALL MINE, ROLLING STONE, ADDICTIONS & BAD LUCK are intricate moments of self-reflection in which he is most vulnerable in expressing himself.

A rockstar lifestyle; Filled with as many spoils as there are riches. The R&B rockstar highlights the PRICE OF FAME while also reeling us in through his lens as GHETTO GATSBY.

GRAVITY , WASTING TIME & DEAD MAN WALKING were all released as singles in the previous year. The records are still as stunning as when they were first released and coincide with the overall theme.

The 3 skits are a major highlight. EGOMANIAC , OBLIVION & WAKE UP CALL are a series of events that sum a dramatic tragedy. This leads into the eclectic outro, ANGEL, in which Faiyaz is repenting and realizing the impact of his lifestyle.

Incorporating skits into the flow of the album allow us to romanticize the project as it encompasses the cinematic feeling we’ve mentioned previously.

Brent’s lyricism is very intentional which is why many are quick to the toxic label. His smooth, nonchalant flows and harmonies pair well with the sonic nature of WASTELAND. A combination of this magnitude has allowed the album to stay in rotation since it’s initial release during the Summer.

Overall, WASTELAND is the thrilling and seductive project to catapult Brent Faiyaz into the atmosphere of super star status. It is cohesive and incorporates the overall details necessary that make it excellent.

As one of the major players of not only R&B but music in general, it will be exciting to see if a tour is his next move as the Fall takes full affect.

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