After months of recurring features, performances, and single releases, Dayvid Michael has finally released his debut album. It started as a track list scribbled on a whiteboard in West Oakland, but now, the CaliMade lyricist has made Frienemy a reality.
With features varying from the Honor Roll to The Invasion, the Oakland native’s first solo project is impressive. Michael delves into the rabbit hole of complicated relationships on “Makeup Sex” and explores the socio-political climate of the US on “Great America”– two of the album’s stand out tracks. The variance in subject matter, depth of analysis, witty wordplay, and seamless chemistry with the project’s featured artists are even more amazing given that Dayvid Michael just turned 20 years old. It’s always exciting when an artist so young and new to the game releases an album of such high quality. That was his intention. “I didn’t want to be another artist just putting out anything,” Dayvid said, “I wanted to set a high standard for other artists releasing their first project.”
The standard has been set, but not only for music. Dayvid Michael’s ability to generate an enviable buzz in such a short amount of time deserves some attention too. After releasing “Android 16,” produced by The Invasion’s Kuya Beats and featuring fellow CaliMade brethren Carbyne and Steve Shankle, the anticipation for Frienemy was solidified. Dedicated friends and fans changed their Twitter and Facebook pictures to the dark cover art and faithfully tweeted “#Frienemy” everyday. The hype was even picked up by established Bay Area artists, such as Moe Green, who made his excitement about the album’s release known.
The buzz was worth the wait.
Many are identifying the sensual-yet-mobbish “Makeup Sex” as the show-stealer thus far. The drumless track creeps along like a Illmatic-era DJ Premier beat is gonna drop. It doesn’t of course. Instead the sparse instrumentation frames an insightful story about sex, ulterior motives and self-esteem co-told by Dayvid and Carbyne. It’s the type of song and album where close listenings don’t disappoint.
Cushioned by quick interludes, Frienemy has only seven songs, but it doesn’t work against him (The soundcloud playlist below excludes the interludes). It is long enough to impress listeners, but short enough to leave folks curious and intrigued. Listen up and take note of a promising new artist out of West Oakland.
Download: Dayvid Michael: Frienemy