LLusion, HXNS, and Cautious Clay Drop, “Sad4good”

For as new school as the sound may be, the love behind LLusion might be as old school as it gets…

The Orange County artist and producer (pronounced “loo-zhuhn”) architects dreamy soundscapes rooted in bold beat-craft, toasty warm samples, and delicate electronic alchemy—yet he creates from a place of pure passion for everything from timeless 64-bit video games to classic jazz. Tallying 50 million-plus streams, nearly 100 million TikTok views, and countless user-generated clips, he works side-by-side with his wife and creative confidant and builds an immersive and inviting world on his 2020 debut for Republic Records.

“The music is a Yin and Yang,” he says. “You could study all night to it, or you can freakin’ dance all night to it. I apply elements of pop, funk, soul, hip-hop, and electronic and make something of my own.”

A particularly inspired childhood pointed him towards this future. Dad worked as an editor on blockbusters such as Transformers and shared a reverence for film with LLusion. The two would spend hours on end discussing and dissecting favorite flicks. Listening to Duke Ellington and doo-wop, he went from playing saxophone in class to picking up drums at home. During freshman year, he discovered late Japanese DJ and producer Nujabes, citing his influence as downright seismic.

“I listened to Nujabes, and it changed my life forever,” he recalls. “It was the first time I had ever heard instrumental hip-hop fused with quality jazz. I’d listen to his beats over and over again. At that point, I couldn’t just keep listening to music anymore; I had to make my own.”

SelfMadeMizzy and Frankie Steeze Drop, “Lied to My Face”

SelfMadeMizzy is an artist from Washington DC that is making a name for himself. He has dropped a few EP’s recently, most notably “No English 2” which came out this year. One of our favorite tracks that he has recently came out with is called, “Lied to my Face”.

He teamed up with Frankie Steeze on the track, and it is a banger for sure. When asking Mizzy about the track he says, “Lied to my face is a heart break song telling my fans how the girl I loved lied to me and was playing me with my enemies that I’ve told her about and then tried to set me up to get killed by them.” The production of the song is phenomenal. Check out the song below.

Lxst Drops, “Upset”

Lxst, whose real name is Malcolm Mathews, is a 20-year-old rising rapper with ever-growing depth and complexity. At 17, following a family dispute, he found himself living on his own, expelled from school and bussing tables to survive—a time that marked the beginning of his love for recording music.
Lxst quietly built a loyal following through SoundCloud with a regionally-loved loosie, “WYA,” popular follow-up, “Last Time,” and “Exhausted,” a sparkling cut which appears on his EP titled ‘Lost.’ The moody 10-track EP boasts an open-hearted skit (“Intro”), little braggadocio (“Lit”), and echoes his rock, trap, and Caribbean influences (“C’est La Vie,” “Crazy”). His sound is an undeniable amalgamation of his inspirations, including XXXtentacion, Juice Wrld, The Fray, Al Green, and Bob Marley. As he works on his forthcoming EP slated for later this year, a forthcoming video that stretches the limits of his creativity, and continues to grow as an artist, Mathews’ output promises a fresh, new take on popular music.