Mura Masa, the 21-year-old producer from Guernsey, is a shining example of the power of today's music world and tastes. The young producer has already transformed and brought forth the sounds of the UK, played numerous major festivals across the globe, and worked alongside A-list artists like A$AP Rocky, Charli XCX, Desiigner, and Damn Albarn of the Gorillaz–all without have to release a debut album. Despite all this, what may be most interesting about Mura Masa is how he authentically stays true to his roots and the emerging talent he manages to highlight, which is the case on his latest pair of singles "Nuggets" featuring Bonzai and "helpline" featuring Tom Tripp.
The first track off the split release sees Mura Masa teaming up with 20-year-old Irish artist Bonzai to explore the chemical surges and letdowns that come alongside both weed and love. The track opens on a fuzzy vocal sample comparing love's chemical responses to that of a narcotic before jumping into what sounds like a bouncing house party. Bonzai leads us along this rush of a musical journey, switching at the drop of a hat between UK rap and transcendent melodic R&B. The song leaves us where it started, albeit viewed from a different lens with Bonzai providing the fuzzy vocal sampling this time around.
The organic high courtesy of Bonzai is continued on "helpline," where Mura Masa and Tom Tripp stumble through the mistakes of being young and having one too many during a hapless night out. Forgetting how one got home, running out of money, and the all too relatable moment of losing one's phone, is all here in this highly infectious ode to less than stellar nights out. "helpline" explores exactly what Mura Masa set out to do with his music from the start:
"I wanted to echo the music you don't really get from the UK anymore. The live-band punk circuit, strong London accents."
This is in large parts thanks to co-writer Tom Tripp who also provides the vocals for "helpline," which at first feels eerily similar to the distorted stylings of early Damon Albarn before coming into his own with a light and beautiful rendition of pop vocals. The 21-year-old London artist who only has two demos and one official release to his name thus far is yet another reason to be excited for young up and coming talent out of London. Mura Masa truly has brought forth strong London accents not only in his musical instrumentation, but in the artists he clearly sees potential in. All this only makes us all the more excited for his debut album, Mura Masa, and what is next in store for both Bonzai and Tom Tripp.