Rei Brown is a New York-based Japanese musician who is still at a relatively early-point in his career. His debut album Xeno, which released in 2022, features a succinct yet in-depth exploration of lo-fi pop and R&B. Working alongside giants of the lo-fi genre such as Joji, Rei Brown has successfully created a dark and dreary, yet wholly beautiful soundscape for himself. His new single, titled Get Me Out, is a testament to his artistic evolution as he ramps up the intensity of the instrumentation, whilst continuing to investigate personal and conflicting emotions.
Get Me Out begins as expected from Rei Brown: a processed digital tapping sound maintains the tempo, whilst his voice is at the forefront of the track. His voice lacks any digital effect and is vulnerable and bare boned. Following roughly thirty seconds of the quiet hypnotic verse, with an almost jump-scare effect, the chorus erupts into a cacophony of highly distorted guitar and drums. Rei’s voice takes on a completely different synthesised tone, as he quickly repeats “Can you please get me out”. The urgency, but also inability to use his own natural voice for the chorus, creates this painfully distanced perspective. As an audience we wish we could reach out and help, but the vulnerability has vanished.
This is what really makes the track so powerful. It feels as if it’s an exploration of vulnerability-versus-impenetrability. As someone who has been open about struggles with mental health and identity through his music, this can be expected from Rei, but it is a really compelling and self-conscious analysis of the subject. The potency of the production is also incredibly impressive. The contrast of the quieter sections and the explosion of the chorus highlights his skill as a producer. Get Me Out is being released alongside a music video directed by Daniel Antebi, and it is one to look out for. We are looking forward to Rei’s upcoming EP and debut headline tour, which is set for May 2024.