Azealia Banks impresses with fresh tracks


I get the impression that Azealia Banks doesn’t give a shit. She’s moving fast and I’m certain that it won’t be long before she finds herself in a world that moves even faster. 

However,  she is collected. You can hear it in her voice and steady flows and you can see it on her kinda-smirky face. 

It appears as though Banks has carefully planned her every move – as planned as an overnight celebrity can be. While most of the listening public is still trying to figure out what to make of her, Banks is already radiating fame. Her confidence is intoxicating. She’s cool.

With no album out and only a handful of MP3s floating around music news sites and blogs, Banks is the most exciting act to emerge from the abstract Internet world in the past month, and probably year. In fact, it has only been one month since “212,” Banks’ first single, was made available online. 

What’s so great about Azealia Banks is that it is hard to explain why she is great.

Banks is hard to define. Her playfully pornographic rhymes are reminiscent of Lil’ Kim in her heyday, and her beats dance somewhere between electronic and old school. 

There is a simple aesthetic at work, though it is sometimes hard to notice underneath all of the sounds and effects coming and going throughout each of her songs. Keep in mind that there are still only five or six of them to speak of. 

Crafting a cohesive response to a piece of art – a single moment in time – is never an easy task. Maybe some of you have noticed that I rarely even try to do it.

 If I was forced to explain why Azealia Banks deserves the praise I am so prematurely giving her, I would simply say it is the badass feeling I get when I listen to her music. 

The mystery, whatever it is that she does so well, pours out of my speakers like magic and awakes something awesome in me every single time.

Just a few weeks ago, Banks signed to Universal, and I expect that things are really about to start moving. This period in a musician’s career is crucial. Most of us have seen or at least heard about Lana Del Ray’s far-from-great Saturday Night Live appearance, and a decent percentage of us have probably sold our Del Ray stock since then. We have forgotten that she is a new artist still building her public persona. 

Internet sensations are not granted the time to perfect their presentation on small stages, and the majority of them suffer for it. 

I am keeping Azealia Banks in my prayers, but I really don’t believe she needs my help. I am excited in a way I haven’t been in what feels like forever. At the same time, I am way too cool to really care all that much.