The rapper and singer known simply as Reggie has the kind of mysterious backstory that harkens back to the blog era, when tracks would appear on message boards and take months to be discovered. Over the past year, the Houston-by-way-of-Arkansas musician has scattered a set of delicately self-reflective and vulnerable tracks across the internet. Each, from the elegantly pared-down “I Don’t Wanna Feel No More” to the Southern charm of “Aint Gon’ Stop Me,” makes his dearth of output nearly unbearable. But it would appear that Reggie is finally making his way into the light. Last week, he dropped his latest single “Avalanche,” a collaboration with the equally virtuosic musician Smino.
“Even when my downs feel like an avalanche/Somehow everything in my life feel like it’s heaven sent,” he sings on the chorus. Smino and Reggie prove to be well-matched on the track, the former offering a suave cool to Reggie’s existential perspective. And they share a sonic sensibility, too. As a rapper, Smino offers an elastic flow reminiscent of André 3000. Reggie, for his part, can’t help but harmonize, even when he’s delivering bars like “I been left out in the rain too much/I might fuck around and put my whole mind in rice.” The song is a meditation on making it through moments of darkness with grace, and both artists have a way of floating above worldly concerns.
Produced by Groove, Teej, and Asa Davis, and featuring the kind of springy and joyous instrumentation you might find in a particularly swaggy church group, “Avalanche” feels like the calm before a storm. Here, Reggie lets his talents run wild, tossing off impressively poetic bars that some of the most established acts out there would save for a big-budget album. It’s an early taste of what will surely be an avalanche from the rising musician.
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