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Mapei: Hey Hey *

Track List

>Don't Wait
>Blame it on Me
>Come on Baby
>Things You Know Nothing About [Re-edit]
>As 1
>Second to None
>Step Up
>Keep it Cool
>Million Ways to Live
>What's Innit 4 Me
>Don't Wait [Jungle Remix]
>Baby, it's You

Album Notes

In 2009, Downtown signee Mapei was featured on "Mary Jane," a track on Major Lazer's Guns Don't Kill People... Lazers Do. It was quickly followed by her own Cocoa Butter Diaries, a four-track EP that showcased her tough but fun-loving rhymes. On its "All the Young Children," the Swedish-American artist also sang a bit, like she was in a stupor (an approach necessitated by the lyrics). Material recorded with Justice, intended for her debut album, was disowned and not released, and then she opted to change direction with a greater emphasis on singing. Going by that EP, there was little indication that she'd be a rapper turned singer. Mapei reappeared in 2013 with the booming, somewhat folkish left-field pop single "Don't Wait," the first taste of Hey Hey. Produced primarily by Magnus Lidehäll, who has worked with Sky Ferreira, Kylie Minogue, and Katy Perry, the album positions Mapei as a classification-defying artist whose material is a hybrid of several styles, including pop and slightly left-of-center throwback R&B. While her rapping skills are undeniable, she demonstrates with each song that her switch was justified. She can wail over a hard disco rhythm ("Things You Know Nothing About") and sweetly la-la-la over ornate retro-modern pop akin to second-album N.E.R.D. ("As 1") with equal degrees of skill and ease, and the number of memorable songs here outnumbers the quantity that leaves little lasting impression. Now that she has found her creative footing, as well as a complementary producer in Lidehäll, it wouldn't be surprising if she made a couple albums that surpass this one. ~ Andy Kellman


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