This spring Chicago rapper Adamn Killa dropped the mixtape Back 2 Ballin, whose forlorn, shimmering “Jeremy Lin” featured a typically moody beat from LA producer (and Jeremih collaborator) Shlohmo. Shlohmo is a compatriot of Canadian pop wunderkind Ryan Hemsworth, and not at all by coincidence, yesterday Hemsworth and Adamn Killa dropped the collaborative track “Commas.”
Killa raps with a zonked lilt that makes him sound like he’s just woken up from a deep sleep, but he can assert himself against Hemsworth’s animated instrumental. The producer makes a great foil for Killa: I’ve admired Hemsworth in part because the kaleidoscopic light he casts on vocalists I know well allows me to hear them differently. On “Commas” he helps Killa’s vocals swing a little harder with glistening, wobbling synths and a patchwork of percussion—I hear bits of minimal trap hi-hats, tropical sprays of what sounds like a chattering timbale, and something that might be a low-rumbling timpani.