when your favorite artists drop the game-winning catch

it’s safe to say, if you’re over twenty, we’ve all had to move on from a favorite artist. it’s an unfortunate turn of events to see a bedrock turned into a punctured waterbed. for me, it’s happened multiple times. from harry styles to highly suspect, these are people i counted on for dependable auditory outputs. then one day, they pivot their style to an unsuspected genre and i’m left wondering if their original releases really meant anything at all.

especially with an album, the coherency of each track melds into the overall vision and message of an LP. we all recognize the dedication it takes to pursue a project and see it through to completion. then to mount it on billboards and tour in testament of the opus, that publication integrates with the artist to become a representation of identity. a passionate listener borrows from that conglomeration for release and expression. so when a new piece of work emerges and it’s no longer seen as a desired rental to drive one’s spirit, there’s genuine disappointment. not at the artist, but at myself for unrealistic expectations.

i’ve revolutionized my style multiple times. for a moment there i wanted to be hip-hop. then a folk artist. then it was indie. then rock. now i’m back at my original home, hip-hop. but it’s mixed with electronic. so for all the exploration i’ve routed, how can i hold fast to one outpouring of musical emotion when its creators revolve just like me?

these dynamics within personality and creation are in fact an important sign of an industry flexible enough to accommodate various reboots. it’s a factor to count on as i continue to grow and evolve in my own process. who doesn’t want to know they’ll be accepted despite unexpected blooms of alteration?

maybe i don’t appreciate surprises. these artists i mentioned lie dormant until, out of nowhere, they release material that’s strayed from the treble and bass cores they expanded on. subconsciously, i’m always awaiting fresh produce from famed, preferred markets. to be buying apples and one day enter to find only squash is quite a punch in the face. couldn’t you at least dispatch a newsletter a couple months beforehand? i mean, they have to know they’re headed in that direction way before the tracks are packaged and blasted into digital eternity.

finding meaningful production, those strings of seconds that mesh with our own fibers, is a tedious task. so when i’m blessed with tunes that resonate my pitchforks, the bond cuts deep. forget a tattoo, these relationships are implants. medical devices essential to the proper function of my sanity. but like any organic matter, they decay over time, becoming used and worn. this is why new music on a familiar trajectory is incredibly revigorating. it floods nostalgia and blends endorphins to remind us of the rush of love at first sight that we had back when it all began.

when your favorite artists drop the game-winning catch and back you into a dark corner, i guess, unfortunately, you’ll have to employ the coping strategies imparted during previously pesky periods of mental instability.

it’s only temporary. there’ll be better days ahead. and there’s someone out there for you who won’t break your heart.

at least not for a little while.

– D K T


life ends. why pretend

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