We’re all about the talented youth working together to change the direction of art and music on a daily basis. In fact, our love for the modern movements is really the foundation of our entire publication. As such, the explorative process of hypothetical collaborations has come to be an imaginative celebration of what could be and what could enhance music to even further reaching heights.
In a modern scene driven by the speed and impact of the internet, artists from everywhere on Earth have the opportunity to share and collaborate with one another. And through it all, at this current point in history, it’s difficult to argue against the fact that Canada and the UK have come to be the pair of particular heavyweights in their creation of internationally acclaimed music per capita.
Both boast key, influential musical histories, and those histories continue through to the modern day. Both have also been the recipients or simply the cultural sparkplugs to some of the most defining modern movements. Between the two nations’ leading roles in the early 2010’s electronic explosion hosted by artists like Disclosure, Purity Ring, Tourist, and Bondax and both countries’ positions dictating the direction of modern hip-hop with subsidiary movements like grime, low-fi, Caribbean-inspired deliveries, and afro-futurism, musical innovation floods from streams sourced in Toronto and Clouds hung above London.
Few artists in either realm or in all of music for that matter find themselves more explosive in their expanding influence over music’s headings towards indefinable post-genrefication than British songstress, Mahalia and Toronto multi-dimensionalist, Sean Leon. The former is perhaps the young artist today making moves at a quicker pace, with a keener direction than anyone else. The latter is an established veteran of hyper-experimentalism across varying spectrums of music. Together, they would create magic.
Prior to 2017, Mahalia had established herself as a vocalist to watch but was still finding her way. Though indicated by her lyricism that even to this day, she’s still searching for something, she’s having a better time of it than most young people. Courageously attacking her vocals to a point of pure individuality and one-of-a-kindness, she is, to put it lightly, on a fucking roll.
Beginning with the explosive release of Sober which to this day is still her keynote claim to fame, a barrage of singles followed in its wake. A floaty ballad titled Hold On featuring Compton’s unmistakable lovechild, Buddy. Anthemic hits No Pressure and Proud of Me which brought to the table Little Simz. No Reply, another heart wrenching love song to add to her canon. A joint project, Water, with Lord Kojey Radical that not only saw its way into the FIFA 18 soundtrack but also came hand-in-hand with a socio-politically motivated short film. A fun-loving breakup banger, I Wish I Missed My Ex, also coming with visuals in tow. And if somehow that wasn’t enough and didn’t bring with all of it an explosion of international limelight notice, a non-stop touring schedule, and a long list of further features and guest spots, she capped it off (to this point) with an impeccable, thematic EP called Seasons. She is, in every sense of the expression, on fire. She also, continues expanding as an artist and is undoubtedly headed to the top of the international music scene.
A vocal approach as unique and jazzily crafted as the late Amy Winehouse, a stylistic breadth wider than even most artists in a time increasingly unbound by genre, a notebook full of amazing lyricism, and a guestbook full of many of her fellow young British stars, all come together to make her one of the most exciting, most influential names in international music. She is the current queen of the UK music scene, and with that crown comes a lot of pressure and responsibility. But for now, it would seem that she’s up to the challenge.
But, being under such an intense microscope with expectations heading alarmingly through Mahalia’s non-existent ceiling could call for the aid of a musician who isn’t only absurdly talented in his own right but has also been able to retain his left-of-center experimentalism, artistically-driven creation, and constant position under the radar even through a career of music and fame. And no one better fits the bill than Sean Leon.
The Canadian artist surpasses most when it comes to brash individuality, crafting his constantly-adjusting barrage of stylistic approaches from a stance of bizarrely unique creativity. He has been instrumental in the explosion of Toronto success, frequently collaborating with Daniel Caesar, Jazz Cartier, Jordan Evans, and Boi-1da while borrowing beats from fellow city juggernauts, The Weeknd, Drake, and CMDWN. His forceful spin on music’s trends are undeniable and his music, unpredictable.
A remarkably gifted lyricist, Leon can rap with the best of them when he wants to. But, an artist through and through, Leon refuses to hold himself to such one-dimensional musicality. In every way his lyricism and rap delivery are fierce and conscious, his vocals are clean and one-of-a-kind, his production, experimental and innovative, and his overall sense of undeniable cool, well… undeniable.
He has become the legend he is today not by only being one of the most interesting and mysterious musicians in the world, but in equal measure by being so fervent in his ability to be a taste maker. A look at the list of people who love everything Sean Leon does is a look at a list of artists and music critics that themselves admire his ability to be so daringly himself.
There is something that Mahalia, on her speedy drive to the top, could learn from a master of cool whose musical exploits encompass just how uniquely vibrant Sean Leon is at a cellular level. After all, the only fear Mahalia has to worry about is losing herself and being unfairly absorbed by the unforgiveness of the popular music realm. At the same time, working with a younger artist with so much talent and socio-politically motivated artistry would be beneficial for the reclusive Leon.
The artistic direction of each would challenge the other, but the experimentalism and foremost, the unique delivery of both from production to lyricism to vocals would be incredibly complimentary.