Okay, this may be one of my favorite singles that I’ve gotten to cover. Naman is a super dope South Asian artist from Boston, and we all know I love to showcase South Asian rappers (that aren’t NAV; sorry not sorry). And this is it. Not only is Naman totally swoon-worthy with THE most amazing fashion sense (not to mention a Harvard grad?!?! I’ll be waiting for a phone call from my mother about this), but he has BARS. Like this shit caught me off guard. His rapid-fire style laced over his dapper demeanor just makes for an absolute total package, and I really think he could come into the rap scene with a heavy impact.
Naman uses a heavy-hitting East Coast style that seems to come with ease. However, he makes it his own with South Asian influences on his lyrics, production, and overall style. It additionally reflects in his staccato sound so that his quick-paced raps can still be heard with clarity. His songs are all packed with visual imagery, creating a whole vibe around his descriptive raps to transport the listener to a whole different world.
Naman released his first music video with his brand new single, “Animal.” The song instantly hits with energy, and definitely took me by surprise. Not only is his rapping fast, but his lyrics are actually good. Often times fast rapping is synonymous with good rapping when in reality there’s no substance in the words, but this isn’t the case. The production matches his style really well in the way that it meets it in intensity without overwhelming his style. In fact, although I did notice a few cool change-ups, the production remains pretty stagnant throughout the whole track, letting the dynamics rely solely on his voice which I really dug. The drums hit super hard, but Naman managed to keep up and stay on top of the beat without letting it overpower his sound.
Right off the bat, the song begins with this really heavy percussion that emphasizes his first line, mimicking the ammo that he mentions to create the setting of a warzone. It also helps to overall describe the angle that he takes with his raps, almost making him seem like the machine gun that’s spitting these words out. This theme reoccurs throughout the rest of the track and is especially reiterated during the chorus when Naman states, “oh so they wanna go to war,” allowing him to reinstate his dominance. It’s also really cool how he contrasts this idea with more artistic, classy ideas that reflect his appearance, using imagery like “Van Gogh” and descriptive words like “fancy” and “dapper.” This starking difference really represents who he is as an artist, especially as I think back to how surprised I was when I first heard the track versus his overall appearance and style.
Can we also talk about the music video because I love everything about it. Just everything from the leopard-print kimono to the beautiful outdoor scenery of Tulum contributed to this animalistic theme so well. Even the flamingo blow-up floaty was the perfect touch. Besides the fact that 00:48 has ya girl thirsting just a little bit, the small attention to detail was honestly super impressive. The gorgeous plants everywhere gave me wild jungle-vibes, and his outfits contrasting with that were amazing. The video was fast-paced enough to keep up with the song without overwhelming the viewer, and the cinematographic aspect was really impressive. If this is his first music video, I’m super excited to see what he comes up with next.
“Animal” is just the beginning for Naman in my opinion. I’m honestly super excited to see what else he can do because this is a really strong track, and the visuals were really fun as well. I think he has a lot of potential to blow up as an artist, and I’d love to hear the different sides of his sound. I’m also really interested in seeing how else he incorporates his culture into his music. “Animal” can be streamed everywhere now, and you can follow Naman for the latest updates on new music on Instagram. You can also hear him featured on NONRESIDENT’s track “Break Bread,” where he shows that even over a slower-paced beat, his flow is still unmatched. The production and lyrics show that South Asian influence in a really creative way, and honestly, he dominates this track. Also keep an eye out because his new mixtape will be out in September and I can already tell it won’t disappoint.
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