“Strange Luv” by Butta B-Rocka

A chemistry as rich as Butta B-Rocka and Homer MC’s can turn even the simplest of songs into a sophisticated show of musical muscle, and this is definitely true of their new collaborative single “Strange Luv.” Though it’s built on a beat the size of a mountain, there’s not much of an argument to be made as to the track being a one-dimensional affair. There’s just too much soul to the vocals, too much heat to the instrumental melody and, above all else, too much connectivity between each of the players for any one element to stand out above the rest in this performance. 

Official Website: https://www.buttabrocka.com/

The master mix here has a multilayered feel that I instantly liked when watching the music video for “Strange Luv,” and I can understand where some would be all the more attracted to the song because of its sterling production design. This isn’t to say that the track gains all of its sonic traction from the gloss on its grooves, but instead to point out the obvious lengths that were gone to by creators to ensure as organic a listening experience as possible. Theirs is a respectable craftsmanship, and any decent critic would agree with me. 

Though it could be described as being rather over the top in its use of theatrics and playful, I don’t find the music video for “Strange Luv” to be visually overwhelming at all. The color it features is topped only by the vitality of the harmonies presented to us in its soundtrack, which goes on as the undisputed centerpiece of the document even amidst its most stirring on-screen moments. Balance is the theme in this part of the release, and it’s one that is artfully offered to us with a hand I would deem one of the more meticulous I’ve heard this month. 

It’s hard to tell which of the two powerhouse vocals in this track is the more dominant, perhaps because they complement each other so exceptionally that it’s difficult to discern where the magic of one ends and the other’s is just beginning. I really hope this isn’t the last occasion on which Butta B-Rocka and Homer MC are able to share a recording studio together, but if it is, they can rest easy in knowing they submitted an incredible collaboration attracting as much hype as it’s unquestionably worth to listeners in 2021. 

I see some really good things coming Butta B-Rocka’s way, and as long as she continues to stay away from the plasticity and filler of her rivals on the mainstream side of the dial, her brand of experimental pop littered with shards of neo-soul will likely find a home with audiences around the globe a lot sooner than some would have anticipated just a decade ago. This is a critical time for progressive R&B, alternative music and even American pop, and if anyone was wondering whether or not this talented singer and songwriter could keep the pace with her competition, this single and its video just definitely confirm her authenticity beyond debate. 

Zachary Rush