– by Kristina Wilford
Aussie rapper/singer Tkay Maidza is quickly becoming the hottest name on Summer line-ups, and with her debut album TKAY, she cements her status as the hottest thing in the Australian hip-hop scene. But music wasn’t always the sole focus for Tkay.
Throughout her teenage years, Maidza was working towards a career as a tennis player. She even trained with Peter Smith the former coach of Lleyton Hewitt. But after years of rigorous training and dedication, her love of music eventually won out. But tennis hasn’t completely disappeared from her life. One of my favourite tracks from TKAY is “Tennies” an ode to her beloved tennis shoes. It’s fresh and exciting with a catchy melody that isn’t afraid of sticking it to the haters.
Other highlights of the release include “Carry On” the popular collaboration with Killer Mike. It has the same club-anthem feel as her 2015 single “M.O.B”. The tempo slows down for “At Least I Know” with dreamy, ethereal verses and a bouncy chorus that showcases her beautiful voice. Tracks like “You Want”, “Simulation” and “House of Cards” follow a similar pattern. Maidza’s stellar rapping skills are definitely there but her vocal chops are given plenty of room to shine.
Double-threat Maidza is arguably at her best when she’s rapidly jumping from rapping to singing without a care in the world. “Afterglow” and “State of Mind” are the best examples of this. Her ability to so flawlessly switch between the two is what will keep her in this game for a long time.
Track opener “Always Been” is a straight- up rap anthem. It’s punchy and takes no prisoners and gives a taste of what Tkay Maidza might be capable of in the future. She has only skimmed the surface on her first album release. Despite being catchy and thoughtfully developed, I don’t think she’s even come close to reaching her full potential. Whatever direction her style takes, I’m sure we’ll be stoked that she didn’t stick with tennis.