A poetic collaboration of conflicting ideals and smooth lyricism permeated by an innate wit and intelligence that is exemplified via slick jazzy beats and nostalgic emotionalism. Benjamin Coyle-Larner aka Loyle Carner is a genius in his own right. He is paving the way for a new direction that rap and what would be previously described as ‘underground’ music is throttling towards.
He opens the album with a choir of female voices on the track ‘The Isle of Arran’ that is partnered with effortlessly quick lyrics that illustrate his battle as a rapper and the greed that surrounds him, concluding that ‘[he] aint like those damn liars’. His deep, enchanting and somehow familiar voice situates you there in the moment with him. Although he does swear countless times and there’s even an excerpt of conversation titled ‘swear’ that captures a humble interaction between himself and his mother, it is refreshing to see a rap album on Spotify that does not have ‘explicit’ accompanying every track. Very much the message conveyed by Carner throughout, his music is digestible for the masses, young and old. Yesterday’s Gone is the kind of album you’d put on in the car on your way home from football training on a Tuesday night with your mum and she would quietly enjoy it instead of turning it off.
Very story-line heavy, the album explores the plethora of emotions experienced by us all, ranging from detachment from intimacy with new people in ‘Damselfly’ and the feeling of aimlessness in ‘Ain’t nothing changed’. The truth is, Carner is a poet posing as a rapper striding confidently in his battered Vans trainers. Tapping into relatable nostalgia that we can all resonate with, his music truly is the breath of fresh air that can rejuvenate any Monday morning and excite any Friday night. And of course, the album isn’t without party tracks. ‘No CD’s’ kicks with a striking bassline and a steadily repetitive chorus that you can learn and sing along with within seconds.
I am a fan of Loyle Carner.
Album: Yesterday’s Gone
My Favourite Tracks: The Isle of Arran, Damselfly