As the saying often goes in sports and music, one can’t find a diamond in the rough when they aren’t willing to look for them in unfamiliar places. This sentiment rings especially true when taking our knack for finding underground talent to the likes of Wichita, Kansas. To the average eye, it's safe to say that Wichita doesn’t have much of a modern music presence or any type of popular culture outside of their popular, often Cinderella-storied collegiate basketball program the Wichita State Shockers.
However with the potential of artists like Malik beginning to surge this year, we see something that most might not be in small town Kansas when it comes to the music world too. With a flow and style similar to that of Yung Pinch as the Wichita native leans even more into this sad boy rap subgenre, there's obvious potential.
Malik started releasing music in 2018 with his first single Shawty For The Season. The track has an other worldly, space-like beat that’s reminiscent of Atlanta’s critically acclaimed Metro Boomin. Featuring a much more up beat, energetic rap style with a simple overall message presented in a catchy melodic way Malik talks of having a girl just when it's convenient. However, even as this track may have only served its purpose in allowing him to get his feet wet in the industry, it did introduce tons of potential talent. The next several songs lead to something bigger and better with steady progression up to Malik’s biggest song yet entitled Ain’t No Thang. The song is significantly deeper, along with slower in pace, after showcasing his talent rapping in his debut single this follow up shows his ability to have an insanely catchy chorus alongside standout rap skills that line up more with who he is as an artist.
Ain’t No Thang to date has gained one 127,000 plays, and as stated this is his biggest track yet dropping pre-COVID19 back in November of 2019, note being that this is a recent success for a rising independent artist in what’s one of the more up and down times socially in recent memory. The track has bars like “heavy on the gas when i'm coming to you, I be on the road I be running to you, she my ride or die I be gunnin for you,” leading into the hook which could all together be another Tik Tok sensation in today's social media age. With this being our glimpse in the world of Malik at the end of 2019, many fans were left eager to see what he had in store for 2020.
The Kansas native surely delivered in the form of his first EP All Girls Are The Devil earlier this year. It’s lead off, self-titled (after the EP itself) track starts with a slow building static guitar and opening lines “I'm an addict to these women, I can't stop these premonitions, Tellin' me it won't end well but, I just never fucking listen, Can't mistreat them so they like me, But they always fucking leave,” all relating to the center purpose and chorus of females “feeding off” Malik’s soul and proving to him once again that “All Girls Are The Devil.” He takes his music to a very vulnerable, emotional state which not only explains why so many gravitate towards relatable feelings but also highlights his continued room for growth.
The latest release of Malik’s Way2geeked once again leans back into the mainstream modern rap scene with a more hip-hop styled beat as well. He kills it rapping that he’s “Way too geeked to talk right now don’t call” blaming his dealer for “supplying” so much. I appreciate underground artists with the ability from record-to-record to form two totally different perspectives in their delivery. With the two polar extremes in today’s music landscape being either (we’ll call it for conversation’s sake) ‘emotional’ rap or ‘trap/turn up’ rap, you often see rising artists struggle to have multiple lanes in terms of versatility. Malik makes it seem easy.
Make sure to stay up to date with the Wichita native’s latest music by following Malik @316god_ on Instagram and follow us @engmtcent for more articles and updates on your next favorite music artist too.