Guitarist, rapper, singer, songwriter and audio engineer, Tyler Shanley aka T Shan, is a creative from Downriver, MI. The 20 year old has been making music for about a year and has invested a grand sum of money building himself a home studio. T Shan’s latest release is the alternative single, “High” (prod. By Saavane). Redefining cool for a new generation, T Shan is a creative force, using music to express his distinctive style. This is not purely rapping or purely singing, this is a blend of the two which creates a kind of melodic dream pop meets cloud rap atmosphere. If urban music is a reflection of the times, then there’s no better moment for it to flourish than now.
T Shan wisely avoids explicit moralizing. Instead he simply tells it like it is (“Its summer time, sunny skies, and we’re doin us. Its 85, livin life, and we dont give a fuck”), with any lessons learned along the way the result of his effortless storytelling and knack for getting inside the listener’s head with virtually minimal effort. By weaving non-sequiturs with personal anecdotes and weed enhanced momentum, T Shan makes a compelling argument for the power of stoner rap.
T Shan is at an impasse, finding himself juggling avant-garde eccentricity and musical stigmatism. His discography could yield either cultish love or feverish hate, depending on your taste, but “High” is his most agreeable track to date, and it’s one of his best. The mix is ethereal, it’s happy-go-lucky. Airy vocal harmonies and shimmering keyboard strokes highlight the colorful tint to the track’s brighter moments.
Despite the alternative vibe, it’s highly accessible. T Shan’s stream-of-consciousness singsong melodic flow is constructed in an impenetrable ambient manner, all the while retaining its trademarked eccentricity (“Got the bongs out and the suns out. Got the pre rolled with my favorite people.”) The experimentalist sonic tinkering and the left-field lyrical meandering make for not only a strong introduction to T Shan’s world, but a contender for alternative track of the year.
If you aren’t already a devout follower of T Shan, delving into the world of his music can be an overwhelming experience. What is the best track to start with? The eclectic sadhop of “Meet Me There” or the urban soul of “Xale”? To be sure just go with “High” and “Ball” (prod. by Kid Ocean) which are his most accessible tracks to date. Listening to these, provide a fun, inspiriting experience. Just light up one and listen…