By Jimmy Sears
With February’s departure and March’s arrival, for me, there’s always been an air of optimism this time of the year. Spring beckons, midterms are over (whether we did well or not), we’ve reached the half-way mark, and baseball returns. As spring blooms, so do budding artists; Brayton Bowman being one such. The 22-year-old artist reminds us that, as humans, we are always a work-in-progress in terms of learning who we are. Inspired by musicians such as Amy Winehouse and Stevie Wonder, Bowman describes his sound as pop music we are not used to, but to be more specific, it could also be called “90s-R&B-influenced electronic music.” This week we’ll look at “22 MINUTES LATER,” which was released on February 24.
The album opens with “WORRY TOO MUCH (INTRO),” where Bowman introduces himself as a 22-year-old who “worries too much.” The track is a story about feeling regret, yet marching on despite these circumstances. There’s a philosophy that states that if one has or lacks the power to fix a problem, then he or she should not worry, which seems to be at play here. The song also describes the insecurities despite “feeling strong,” which I’m positive we’ve all felt at some point. The instrumental includes smooth piano play along with rhythmic drum beats. Both elements complement each other to make for a strong opening track that ends with the declaration that Bowman will “keep on writing these songs.” It seamlessly transitions into “PUFF PUFF PASS,” which, if the title didn’t give it away, is about relaxing while smoking weed to de-stress and forget about the struggles of everyday life. The voices change their pitch and sound throughout to possibly represent the drug’s effects along with psychedelic beats to create the illusion of being under the influence.
Throughout the album, claps and snaps are heard and share a similar beat to “WORRY TOO MUCH,” which, while it doesn’t particularly bother me, it makes me wish Bowman put more variety into his sound to show us what he’s really capable of. But, for now, this is a solid album, so I’d definitely recommend checking out “22 MINUTES LATER.”