Nick Aluoch, a student at UT, recently created a playlist called the Connect, which dropped at midnight on Tuesday, to compile music from a variety of student artists. The artists range in age and genre of music, but they share a commonality in their talent and passion.
The playlist, which can be found on Apple Music and Spotify, does a great job of finding songs by different artists around campus. The playlist is easy to access and contains 15 songs.
15 is a good number of songs to have; a listener can get a feel for the tones and textures of the songs featured without being overloaded with hundreds of songs to listen to.
The playlist features some unique music and even a 50 second clip of The Pride of the Southland Marching Band performing “Rocky Top” placed right in the middle of the playlist, acting almost as an intermission of sorts.
What doesn’t work?
The main issue I found when listening to the playlist is that a lot of the songs blend together. The playlist severely lacks variety. Most of the songs are from the same genre and a lot of them sound quite alike.
While all the songs featured are extremely well-written and produced, a lot of them have very similar tones and rhythms. When listening to the playlist, it almost feels as if you are listening to the same song on a loop in some places.
Other than a lack of variety, there aren’t really any negatives to this playlist.
Stand out songs
“No Mercy” by Toia B — The opening song on the playlist, “No Mercy,” packs a punch. It’s a shorter song, but it has a certain originality to it that cannot be found anywhere else. The lyrics are clever and flow eloquently. Plus, the album cover is very well done.
“Play the Fool” by Euro Da Don —Featuring a very unique and original beat, and instrumental piano music remnant of something from Dr. Dre’s repertoire, “Play the Fool” is a song that is simply fun to listen to. From the opening piano instrumental to the beats, it is obvious to anyone listening that Euro Da Don cares about the music he makes.
“All on Me” by Tre Pulce III — The song starts out with a car engine turning over, followed by distorted music that sounds reminiscent of the 40s or 50s and continues to play in the background for the rest of the track. This piece is one of the most original songs on the playlist and is definitely something you should be listening to.
“Living” by L8veh8te — A slower mashup of acoustic guitar and hip-hop, “Living” leaves you with a mellow mood after listening. The slow, soft music is equal parts relaxing and entertaining. The lyrics are intelligent and the song is overall nice to listen to. L8veh8te is definitely going places.
“Freshen Up” by G2live — A change of pace from the playlist’s predominantly hip-hop soundtrack, “Freshen Up” has an indie-alternative feel to it. It stands out on the playlist mostly because of how different it sounds from the rest of the songs featured. However, if G2live’s song was to go up against any recent indie rock hit, it would certainly be able to hold its own.
So, should you listen?
Yes, you should.
While the playlist might not be perfect, it is genuinely pretty good. It features some very talented artists and some very unique songs, and it promotes campus musicians who work very hard at their craft.
Though some songs stand out more than others, each song on the playlist has something to offer.
Overall rating: ★★★★☆ (4/5)