NEW ARTIST DISCOVERIES: Masei, Aztec Flow, Bumpy & UccisMood
Each week the Australian scene continues to grow and excel in its own distinct way, with artists from across the country redefining musical constraints and telling their own authentic story in a dynamic fashion. In Volume 16 of our ‘New Artist Discoveries’ segment, we are showcasing four unique artists who have fashioned their own distinct sound within the scene. South-West Sydney artist Masei is unstoppable on ‘Boss’d Up’, whilst fellow Harbourside artist Aztec Flow lands blow after blow on ‘Brentwood in the 90s’. Naarm-based genre-bending artist Bumpy undergoes self-healing on ‘Return Home’, alongside UccisMood who harnesses his pain-ladened vocals to break down his own self-sabotage on ‘TOX!C’.
Genre: Rap X R&B
Song: ‘Boss’d Up’
Born and raised in Sydney’s South West, young up-and-comer Masei has continually proven himself to be an artist who is determined to pave a distinct musical lane in a scene craving something refreshing. His latest single, ‘Boss’d Up’, sees the multifaceted Masei navigating an industry where flexing is often a mask for financial incompetence, and success brings with it jealousy from those you thought closest to you. Masei addresses feeling disconnected from his home suburb of Bankstown – “2200 the place I was raised, but lately I ain’t got a place” – and from those who repeatedly show their two-facedness, “Ain’t no one showing me love bro and if they do they do it discreet, they’re fake, I can tell by the look on their face”. What instantly makes this stand out however is the head-turning manner in which Masei switches up his delivery midway to a slower tempo where every lyric is sent out with unapologetic precision. Equal parts reflective and confident, ‘Boss’d Up’ assures that Masei isn’t afraid to callout what he sees.
Song: ‘Brentwood in the 90s’
Following on from his debut collaborative effort ‘Vertigo’ alongside Atahan and Echo The Don, Aztec Flow has brought his undivided energy (and then some) to his latest single ‘Brentwood in the 90s’. Instantly you’re swept up in the menacing production and heated delivery – both by Aztec – that gives credence to the frenetic rummaging of thoughts occurring in the Sydney-based artist’s subconcious as he details his frustrations with haters, ill-speakers and phoniness. The track is distinguished by Aztec’s seamless flow which ensures that every bar hits as its meant to, moreover the wholly original feel of the song showcases the multi-talented artist and producer’s ability to procure a release which is immediately recognisable as his. Filled with plenty of nostalgic and pertinent references, from the apt “Y’all sellouts like Tenpenny” to the use of the signature ‘GoldenEye’ Nintento 64 Silenced PP7 gun shots, ‘Brentwood in the 90s’ signals Aztec’s desire to be completely himself in his music.
Song: ‘Return Home’
Written, performed and produced by Naarm-based Noongar woman Bumpy, ‘Return Home’ sees the enchanting vocalist exploring her feelings of seeking home in order to feel a greater sense of contentedness and ease with the world around her. From the beginning the listener is nourished by Bumpy’s healing vocals and warm harmonisations that are elevated against a backdrop of slight solemn violin strings, delicate drums and subtle guitar plucks. As Bumpy assures and grounds herself in the midst of uncertainty, we are subsequently led into a second act which crescendos sonically and leaves the listener enlivened. Bumpy speaks intimately to her feelings of connection with her ancestors – “I feel the stories that we couldn’t speak of, and I feel your power flowing through my blood” – whilst evoking an internal duality where she feels both the pain of unspoken words and the power of such strong spiritual guidance. A truly impeccable and authentic display of self.
Genre: Rap X Trap
UccisMood’s debut 2021 album ‘CAPO’ has stayed with us from our first listen back in August last year to now, and this is due in no small part to the inimitable approach to trap and rap that the young artist spearheads throughout the project. Distinguised by a yearning vocal delivery and gasping tone of voice, the Brisbane-based artist relents his innermost thoughts to listeners across the entire 10-track release in unrelenting fashion. However, it is on ‘TOX!C’ where listeners can experience a demonstrative display of his raw talent. The second track off the album details UccisMood recounting his own toxicity and internal conflict that sets up an emotional barrier between himself and his significant other. UccisMood breaks down his own awareness of the self-sabotaging mindset that consistently stops him from allowing love in, and this is all in spite of his determination to avoid the allure of materialism that comes with success. One thing’s for sure, there isn’t an artist like UccisMood in Australia.
Photos by @burrowsdigital (Masei Photos), @evergreendaze (Aztec Flow Photo 1), @wild_hardt (Bumpy Photo 1), @blackacemediaproduction (UccisMood Photos)
Words by Matthew Badrov