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Song You Need to Know: Normani and 6lack, ‘Waves’

Normani reintroduces her self as a solo star with her best song yet

Normani, 2018

Normani, 2018

Dennis Leupold

Fifth Harmony’s Normani has always had star potential, but here’s the song that truly proves it. “Waves,” with 6lack, is the type of mid-autumn, bass-bumping, R&B slow jam that gets stuck in your head and turns the party into a grindfest. Above a speaker-blowing, low-end synth, “Waves” is alluring and hypnotic, drawing you in quite like the song’s narrative of a hard-to-beat lover. 6lack is a perfect vocal partner to Normani — whose range is never showcased too ostentatiously — but he clearly is only hear to complement her.

This single follows a year of surprising releases from the budding solo star. She kicked it off with the sleeper hit “Love Lies,” a Khalid collaboration with a surprising amount of longevity given its slow melodic burn. More recently she released a two-track EP with Calvin Harris that feels like more of an extension of the DJ’s funkier recent work than a revelation of who Normani is. “Waves” shifts the narrative entirely, feeling worthy of the type of star Normani sees herself as and wants to be.

Newswire

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