A Sad Boyz 4 Life Album From Mexican Regional Music Star Junior H
The corridos tumbados movement may have originated with the sound of spiky requinto guitar playing, but Junior H’s $ad Boyz 4 Life takes that rawness and mixes it with gritty production and plenty of reverb for an intensely moving record that mourns the loss of love.
In 2021, Junior H is back with a brand-new album that further emphasizes his signature corridos tumbados sound and poignant emotions. After successful albums like Atrapado en un Sueno and Cruisin’ With Junior H, as well as $ad Boyz 4 Life, he cemented himself as one of Mexico’s most talented and impacting young artists today.
He also explores something entirely different with songs like “Wasteman” and “We Up,” both of which tell stories about the journeys of someone who left their roots to pursue other interests but ultimately fell off the wagon. While not particularly dark, these songs leave you feeling as if you have been along for the ride with someone special to you: those songs that leave you feeling connected to someone you care about and left you feeling like you’ve shared it together.
Lyrical introspection forms the core of this album, running through tracks like “La Bestia,” which reflect on the loss of a close friend. But it’s also where he reaches out to listeners, encouraging them not to despair and finding joy despite all that has been taken away.
On the opening title track, he even calls upon Marca MP’s Ed Maverick for a haunting ballad that is both captivating and tragic, with Maverick’s voice serving as a bridge between himself and the music. Throughout the album, he delivers some of his most memorable vocal performances, such as a chilling scream on “La Bestia” or an earnest declaration of love that’s all too brief on “Por Dentro.”
Big Sad 1900 has been documenting his neighborhood tensions and everyday adventures for some time now, with a sense of hindsight that feels like the opening scene in a movie about West Los Angeles’ La Cienega Heights. Additionally, he collaborates with G-funk inspired beatmakers Uce Lee and Cypress Moreno on mixtapes which give them an integrated sound.
The only drawback to many of these tapes is that their lyrics may be difficult to decipher, leaving little room for interpretation. But if you can get past that hurdle, the stories they tell are worth listening to.
Sleep Well Beast has never been known as a great political band, but Matt Berninger has found an innovative voice here. He takes two disparate individuals–President Trump and his wife Carin Besser–and transforms them into his most captivating characters. It’s truly an empathetic reinvigoration, with breathtaking music backing it up.