August Alsina is a young singer from New Orleans and the newest R&B star Def Jam are backing are under The-Dream’s stewardship. He’s may not quite be the undeniable hope that kind of position confers, but he has an incredible tone to his voice – pitched somewhere between Trey Songz’s gooey high notes and the untethered emotives of “ratchet&B” singers like Ty Dolla $ign or TeeFLii – and his debut single I Luv This Shit with Trinidad James really is very good.
He can be derivative – his mixtape ‘The Product’ is half-filled with covers and remixes – but his talent overrides those concerns (for now at least). His latest song, for example, runs in the tradition of weed-as-girl metaphors that goes all the way back through Brown Sugar to Mary Jane but, again, delivers the goods. He coasts over producer Cassius Jay’s low-slung beat, rambling through a series of hooks until belting out the main one in the chorus, and fellow NOLA native Curren$y steps in for a typically laid-back and contemplative verse. Let Me Hit That is the first sample from his sequel mixtape ‘The Product 2’, out early next month.