Excluding a collaboration with Knxwledge, it has been two years without new music from Los Angeles-based R&B singer Anderson .Paak. The return to the limelight for .Paak came courtesy of an advertisement for the latest Apple Homepod device. The video directed by Oscar-winner Spike Jonze features FKA Twigs dancing around her apartment to a new song by .Paak. Despite everything surrounding the premiere of the new song, it’s no surprise it has already risen to the top of the iTunes charts.
The new single, “’Til It’s Over,” is an Apple Music exclusive and it seems the service will be fully backing the artist. After .Paak’s burst into the mainstream via Dr. Dre’s 2015 album Compton, also an Apple Music exclusive, he has been making waves since, getting on the XXL Freshman list and earning a Grammy nomination for his 2016 album, Malibu. Now with the streaming giant Apple Music behind him, “‘Til It’s Over” marks the first single leading up to the newest .Paak project.
“’Til It’s Over” is an upbeat electronic-tinged R&B track with production by Jeff Kleinman and Michael Uzowuru. The pair known for their work with Kevin Abstract and Frank Ocean managed to produce a track that subverts much of the expectations for a track with Anderson .Paak. The track starts off in classic .Paak fashion, incorporating quick-
tempoed R&B with hip-hop bass and drum. However, it begins to separate from that, with some melancholic piano and a harp breakdown over the chorus. The song twists and turns with subtle dubstep-influenced synth followed by a ambient beat invoking chillwave artist Toro Y Moi circa 2013.
Sonically the whole track is a masterpiece in production, letting Anderson .Paak relax vocally. The simple repetition of the chorus, “I’ma ride it ‘til it’s over,” allows Kleinman and Uzowuru to take chances. It’s Anderson .Paak simplicity and subdued emotion on the track that makes it so strong when he gets into his harmonies on the second verse in the line, “would you stay if your heart had the power?,” leading back again to the “‘til it’s over” breakdowns. .Paak’s unique voice gets its time to shine in its own way, delivering a performance that touches on heartbreak and pain only when it’s most necessary.
The initial success of “’Til It’s Over” is deserved for .Paak, even if he has made it without his backing band, The Free Nationals. With a fantastic single, commercial, and Apple Music on his side, Anderson .Paak is set up for a triumphant 2018 with the hopeful release of his third studio album.