Allison – [Stef]

It is quite difficult to find an artist within the digicore scene that matches the same level of quality on each and every one of their offerings as Stef. The 17-year-old master of his craft has taken up a far more lengthy and spread-out release schedule than nearly every single one of his contemporaries, but this increased time in-between drops has only come to benefit their work beyond anything else. 

The ways in which this approach comes to work so well are not hard to point out whatsoever. Each time he ends up dropping feels like a long-awaited spectacle, and it is safe to say the purposefully rich quality of each track is a resulting factor from this outlook entirely. And with that being said, his newest single “Allison” lives up to these expectations beyond a shadow of a doubt.

One of Stef’s most defining features as a standalone act has been their expert sense of rhythm when it comes to building each of their tracks. He wraps his stilted vocal demeanor around tightly-constructed passages where his vocals bounce between the standard rhythm of the beat — creating this incredibly addicting and appealing approach to pop music that has seldom been touched before. 

He does this yet again on “Allison,” this time over a beat by doxia that is as tailor-made for this approach as it comes. The appropriately stripped-back aspects that this beat withholds benefits Stef greatly, as the 3-note riff played throughout the track sits in the background as just another memorable facet in a track that contains more than anyone could desire. 

Most of these features occur at the track’s spotlight — that, of course, being Stef’s magnificent vocal performance here. The all-too-effective chorus showcases that aforementioned rhythmic approach in its entirety, creating a memorable passage for this track to stand on all by itself. But both the verses and bridge see our performer here going above and beyond in delivering some soaring vocal runs that highlight just how dynamic his voice can be if put to use in this manner. The bridge, especially, communicates the song’s themes of love-loss and longingness through his vocals alone, perhaps better than the songwriting could ever do on its own. 

Though Stef has a formula down all to his own, he is still showing the brightest signs on improving what was thought to be perfection time and time again. Tracks like this are exceptional examples of this notion in full effect, and though he likes to take time between releases, this remarkable talent is set to defy all expectations yet again once that time does come.