Last week, we saw the first offering from newly announced duo Abandoned Mall Arcade (AMA). The group, made up of producer Elias Abid and vocalist Jabril Power, gave us the visuals for the introductory track "Vishnu" before launching the full EP this week.
The eighteen minute EP is aggressive, teary-eyed, and futuristic, like an unstable traveler walking into a bar in outer space with something to prove. The intensity of "Vishnu" kickstarts the EP which sets the tone for the remaining five tracks. "A Dream (Upon Waking)" is coated in auto-tuned emotion while "Tribe" might fit nicely within the film Tron. Guitars, pianos, everything seems organic here. Quite possibly the strongest moment within the EP arrives as the progressive track "Tears" blends into the instrumental number "Fears". From a minimal, lyrical-focused onslaught ("Tears") to a wordless synth frenzy ("Fears"), the two songs come together so well that they feel like one long composition. The six songs as a whole come and go so quickly with the AMA EP that a repeat should be mandated on SoundCloud.
While Jabril Power hasn't done much with music prior to this release, he establishes himself as a strong voice in the hip-hop community with this project. Abid, meanwhile, is boosting his portfolio, flexing with original releases, remixes, and instrumental numbers. At only 20, he is certainly a name you should be looking out for more. I'm not sure if Abandoned Mall Arcade is a one-off EP or if more heat is around the corner, but this EP is one hell of a résumé builder for both Power and his producer-in-crime/henchman Elias Abid.
"This a different level of hell, I ain't been here before."