Neva Look Back – [Bari]

St. Louis/Chicago artist Bari really took zero breaks this year, dropping his standout ‘MSTRGLSS’ project back in February and a slew of memorable singles that sustained his momentum throughout the rest of the year. A look at his 2019 repertoire shows an artist in the midst of mastering his own style, and as a result, today Bari has delivered his most concentrated body of work so far in the form of ‘Neva Look Back’.

This 11-track mixtape offers a comprehensive look at Bari on his own terms, channeling his signature mellow melodic-rap style while homing in on the aspects of his music that separate him from the pack. His natural inclination toward head-scratching wordplay and unpredictable flows seize the spotlight on ‘Neva Look Back’, accented by a balance of energy and finesse. The unique qualities that Bari brings to the table reflect brightly on the mixtape’s strongest moments; he sounds like he could keep flowing for days over the distorted synths and bouncy percussion of “Iite Shawty”, and the usual raunchiness of his lyrics comes off as especially effortless on the Jay2-assisted “Frosty”. The mixtape ends on another high note with “Make Em Sick”, serving as yet another testament to Bari’s ability to counterweight aggressive, hard-hitting bars with his chilly demeanor. The beat selection on ‘Neva Look Back’ also separates it from being just another mixtape, and instead of just some loosely thrown together compilation of songs, it carries a consistently cold sonic aesthetic.

Listen to Bari’s ‘Neva Look Back’ mixtape below, and if you’re in Chicago, check out his headlining show at Subterranean on Jan. 8.