Trackstar – [Jay Wood]

Chicago native Jay Wood returns to Lyrical Lemonade with an exciting debut EP titled Trackstar, which marks his first official project. The EP features production from in-house Freesole producer Moses Mode and Namesake, with the latter most notably having worked with STL’s pinkcaravan! Wood tends to infuse relatable songwriting, smooth r&b hooks, and raw lyricism to create a differentiated, yet refreshing sound from his Midwest contemporaries. As a member of the south suburban collective Freesole, Wood’s resume already consists of opening for Ugly God, as well as Ravyn Lanae at the University of Missouri. He’s also traveled nationwide by performing with Sofar Sounds, while providing consistent support for the local Chicago rap scene in the process.

On the track “CHAMPAGNE,” Wood flaunts a luxurious lifestyle over Namesake’s ominous, 808-heavy production. Conceptually, “TRACKSTAR” is the standout song on the tape. Wood writes about a situation-ship, where non-commitment consequentially results in the couple sabotaging the relationship altogether. “WE GOOD?” featuring Freesole’s S.O.S. displays Wood’s R&B capabilities, with passionate remarks emphasizing the importance of checking on a partner after falling out. The song also verifies the necessity of overcoming adversity in any stable, long-term relationship. On “ICEBREAKER,” Wood concludes the EP by shooting his shot at a potential partner, demonstrating his natural storytelling ability that comes from genuine experience.

What makes Jay Wood’s EP great, in my opinion, is that there is a musical taste catered to everyone’s interest(s). Moreover, despite the project being dominated by romantic themes, Wood’s confident tone, along with the club-catered production makes the project equally as worthy to bump in the whip. My personal favorite record, “SH*T!,” supports the previous point, as Wood successfully delivers a love-related banger. Stream the project below!