Rising Memphis rapper Cities Aviv has the suave swag, smart flow, and creative mind to make it big. Need proof? Today, he released a brand new mixtape via Mishka called Black Pleasure. But instead of trying to encapsulate what it sounds like and what it means, I’ll let Cities do it himself. Check out “Forever,” one of the standout tracks, his explanation, and then ALL 15 tracks.
Cities Aviv new album doesn’t imply fetishistic experimentation, but it does explore some dark sounds and unsettling ideas. There’s sonic shoutouts to the high age of musical black pleasures—the 80s—with nods to depressive new wave atmosphere, black romantic melodies, and heavy Rick Jamesian bass. There’s also some references to the rap tradition of Cities Aviv hometown (Memphis) with distorted, echoed vocals and stuttering drums. It’s an entirely different kind of trippy over here though, man. If you really want to get to the highest levels of subversive joys on this release there’s the lyrics that openly question the nature of reality, and our pursuit of pleasure. Heady, adventurous stuff for an album that (must) share a title with countless pornos.