Someday Somewhere: A Review of Electronica Artist Mura Masa

On April 9th, Alex Crossan, better known as indie electronica artist Mura Masa, quietly released his first multi-song project on Jakarta Records. In keeping with his dozens of earlier singles, Someday Somewhere is full of hope and light and clearly draws influence from experimental trap producers such as Cashmere Cat, as well as more established sub-genres of R&B which have been present in Mura Masa’s earlier works.

Crossan identifies himself on SoundCloud as an 18-year old beat slayer, heartbreaker, producer, singer, writer and lover and is certainly channeling the more romantic aspects of himself on the 7-track extended play. Someday Somewhere begins with “Are U There,” a downtempo track on which the Crossan sings, “I need to know if you’re here with me,” which provides a surprisingly melancholy first impression of the mostly upbeat extended play (EP).

That feeling is mostly dispelled by the second track and sure hit of the project, “Firefly,” a bouncy, danceable song on which Crossan blends organic musical elements with a warbly synthesizer and catchy vocals provided by English singer Nao. “Firefly” is the second most trending song on Crossan’s EP and the most popular song on his project which features vocals.

Another of the project’s standouts is “Low,” a hip hop collaboration between Crossan and rapper Jay Prince. At first glance, the track seems simply to be another self-aggrandizing rap song filled with slang references to marijuana and the hood, but on closer examination is in keeping with the romantic theme of the EP. Its occasionally clichéd lyrics serve as a contrast on which to juxtapose Jay Prince’s crumbling relationship. Parallels will also certainly be drawn between Jay Prince’s vocal style on the track and Kendrick Lamar’s, as both artists share raspy voices and an affinity for wordplay and anaphora.

The EP finishes on a hopeful and energetic note with “When U Need Me”, which serves as a continuation of the album’s first track, confirming Crossan’s sanguine view on love.