I still remember when I was feeling skeptical before listening to “Runnin,” which was the first track that my boy sent to me earlier this year. While I wasn’t exactly floored by the track (turns out the track is a few years old, or so I was told), it’s always easy to spot the potential and talent that an MC possesses. Zaldy is a new artist that has an obvious knack for rapping, and while he might not yet be reinventing the wheel when he raps, he carries some natural talent that has translated finely when he steps into the booth.
With “Who There?,” we get to hear a much more recent track from Zaldy that demonstrates how much he’s progressed with his writing. The Bay Area MC shows promise you wouldn’t ordinarily come across when you’re forwarded old tracks; admittedly, I was expecting a Drake, Chief Keef, or YG knock off going into his music, but what he brings is fortunately much more than that. I suppose the easiest comparisons to make would be that Zaldy is like the west coast counterpart to NYC’s ProEra movement — a 90s kid making music that, above everything else, leans more towards the boom bap sound, but without ever compromising himself as an artist in his own right. You understand his influences and how he’s a descendant of that style, yet they never overwhelm his own persona as he begins to go over a track.
What truly excites me about the videos I’ve seen so far, is that they show that Zaldy has a good idea of what he wants to do as he begins every track. He has a clear idea of song structure, while also making great use of an entertaining and distinct flow that already sounds fairly polished — there are some lines in his raps that could be seen as being cliché, but it’s remarkable that he rarely has bars that come out sounding awkward. I don’t want to put any pressure on a young artist, but I’m also interested to see where Zaldy takes his subject matter, because although he’s shown that he can be a lighthearted, laid back rapper, I have a feeling he’s capable of writing some stuff that will transcend that. It’s all purely speculation, though, so we’ll have to see.
It’d be hard to write up a piece on an artist that I don’t think too highly of. Luckily, my friend (who I must mention did a great job with the video) put me on Zaldy’s music. I’m not sure how serious or how far he’ll decide to take this rap thing, but at the very least, it seems like we’re going to be getting a proper mixtape sometime this year. I’ll make sure to keep ya’ll posted.