Yay Area R&B singer-songwriter Kehlani earned a Grammy nom for her mixtape/album gray area project You Should Be Here, and rightly so as it was excellent (which can’t be said for all Grammy nods). As the title suggests, the mixtape/album is heavy with motifs of heartbreak, abandonment, and vulnerability while Kehlani’s delivery is light, airy, and incongruously whimsical.
On her latest offering “Did I,” she is much more assertive. She owns her power position in music and in relationships, and does not waste time apologizing to industry peoples and lovers alike. Kehlani operates on a constant sliding spectrum of rapping and singing, easily shifting modes when looking to modulate her attitude. The track initiates with a high pitched siren-like synths that serve as a warning of what’s to come. Then deep 808s, low-end synth, rolling hi-hats, and a sample of Feist’s “Intuition” surround her faint yet penetrating lyrics. If this song is written specifically about someone, it’s a safe bet that they feel pretty low right now. Check it out below.
You Should Be Here is out now via Atlantic.