Abhi the Nomad
Marbled (Tommy Boy)
Reviewed by Abby Johnston, Fri., April 13, 2018
Abhi the Nomad comes by his moniker honestly. Son of an Indian diplomat, Abhi Sridharan Vaidehi spent much of his 24 years globe-trotting, home base changing eight times before he turned 18. That constant movement informs his debut full-length Marbled, which pairs bright beats with subtly gritty raps grappling with urban loneliness and isolation. Acoustic guitar plink spines the cooing R&B of "Spacecraft," a brief, unsettling recitation of physical and emotional detachment, while horn accents the street-beat bounce of "Planes," which also name-checks tour escapism. The title track pings to life on a melodic pop pulse, staccato keyboard quirk rooting the song more than its bass thump, all in service of a dark, modern message: "Binge and drink again, smile and pretend again/ Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to rock bottom." That acoustic also strings together "Letter for God," a banger about the existence of primordial beings that's primed for Southwestern sandal weather now that its rolling stone has paused for a hot minute in Austin. Marbled thrives in this ironic fusion of light and dark, honest and stark, but hella fun to jam.