I’ve been spraying praise towards Maeshima Soshi for most of the back half of 2019, and until the young artist starts slipping up, not sure that will be changing heading into 2020. Part of the appeal lies in how Soshi can hop-scotch all over the place — his sleek production work for Jewel earlier this year is an idol highlight — but what really makes his journey fun to watch is seeing him develop his own musical voice. When Soshi’s name appears in the artist level, he gravitates towards a spacious, chilled-out sound often bringing in a little bit of brass to get the energy going. It’s laid back, sure, but all that time to reflect can also lead to some more melancholy vibes creeping up.
Latest number “36.5℃” finds Soshi adding warmth to this approach, with an assist from rapper Rin Ne (it looks better in Japanese, Rin音). While it might initially sound a little downer, both parties involved find the glow within. Listen below.
That sax blurt wafting over those keyboard melodies would seem to indicate that this temperature is going to be on the melancholic side, but then Rin Ne enters into “36.5℃” and finds a way to add some spring to Soshi’s plainative backdrop. Turns out all that room is ideal for someone to just bounce around over, and Rin Ne does just that with verses that find him opting to enjoy himself rather than ruminate too much, while even Soshi gets in on the mood by adding some more rattling percussive notes to the backdrop to help flip the words up higher. Guests tend to add the extra punch that Soshi always seeks out in his own songs, but here it proves especially effective as the rap reveals a new dimension to the producer’s sound, recasting what could have been downtrodden saxophone blurts into something far more energetic.