Underrated is a label that is thrown around very broadly in hip-hop music these days. No other descriptor seems more fitting, however, for an artist with the résumé of Norman Perry. Embodying the darker side of R&B, Perry’s subject matter frequently focuses on romantic betrayals and fake friends, especially exemplified in his most recent release, 2020’s aptly titled, Way Darker This Time, which paints an intimate portrait of a moody artist gliding over production that somehow combines bleakness and vibrancy culminating in an atmosphere that feels almost like a neo-noir film. “2032305” strays a bit from the more desolate themes of Perry’s music and functions as a love letter to nightlife in the 305. With a chorus interpolating Drake’s classic “Furthest Thing” as an allusion to his own flaws and imperfections, Perry feels right at home over the brooding arpeggiated guitar melody by Montreal-based producer frnchhmwrk. Continuing a journey for catharsis, “2032305” meanders back to a looser atmosphere of late-night pursuits in Miami that, like most of Perry’s work, feels best suited for dark, smoke-filled rooms or nighttime drives that last until the sunlight.
The Connecticut-based singer/rapper has captivated fans since his vibrant single “Alive” burst onto the underground scene in 2015 which he followed up with a nearly flawless debut album in 2018's Play by Play. Wasting no time, Perry quickly dropped its versatile follow-up album in 2018’s XX2 and a stellar collaboration project with industry heavyweight producer Foreign Teck in 2019’s Foreign Perry. Continuing to develop a loyal following with his distinctive aura, Norman Perry maintains on a course to etch his name into the future of R&B.