A lot of people have been calling C.K. Marion ‘futuristic hip-hop,’ and I tend to agree with them. Her new single and music video “Dreamer” doesn’t fit in with the contemporary, and the little it takes from the past isn’t exactly what I would call mainstream, then or now. The melodic faceting here is as key to the climactic hook as the actual intensity of Marion’s delivery is, and taking cues from trap, trip-hop, ambient, and vaporwave, “Dreamer” sounds more like a patchwork of aesthetics that together illustrate what hip-hop is truly comprised of in 2021.
The waterside backdrop featured in the music video for this song amplifies the catharsis implied in the lyrics ten-fold, and I really appreciate how well the mix of the single is preserved in this incarnation as well. A lot of the videos landing on my desk this season have been remixed almost in an attempt to highlight the multidimensionality of a specific composition, but Marion knew better than to mess with a good thing in this release. She’s already got a treasure of a track here, and supporting it with virtuosic visuals is all she needed to do for us to get a good picture of her artistry in this video.
C.K. Marion is loveably eccentric and likely doesn’t care whether or not you think her style is a quality counterpart to what the mainstream hip-hop community has been producing in 2021, and it’s for this reason that her sound in “Dreamer” is as incredibly magnetizing as it is. This is quite possibly the most original rap track I’ve listened to this summer, and not because of its surface-level attributes at all. The fabric of this release is its experimental punch, and if you like what it does in “Dreamer,” you need to make a point of listening to the Revitalized EP in its entirety ASAP.