First Thoughts: Mathaius Young, 'Take the Night Away'

  /  05.26.2017

It doesn’t take long for Mathaius Young to set the tone of his new album Take The Night Away. In fact, he does so on “Laylow,” its intro track, with its opening lines: “I’m too young just to lay low / so I’ma talk my shit / I’ma talk my shit.”

Despite being a talented rapper and producer, Young has spent the majority of his music career behind the boards and out of the spotlight. It’s apparent though that he’s finally ready to introduce himself to the world with this project. Take the Night Away is a perfect example of what can happen when a multi-talented artist decides to go all-in on himself. Showcasing how comfortable he is singing, writing, rapping, and producing, these 12 tracks serve as an exploration of his limits as an artist and give the listener a feel for what he’s really capable of.

When Young touches a track, he leaves a recognizable fingerprint in the form of atmospheric beats, samples that are difficult to identify (is that a wind chime? a synth? someone humming? no idea.), and introspective lyrics. It’s as if he’s tirelessly working to create the soundtrack to a night spent walking around the city. According to him when talking about this project, “Every track made, I rode around to and listened to it at night and it felt right. So I felt calling the album ‘Take The Night Away’ was the perfect name and setting.” This holds true for every track on project (except one).

“Flawless”

While “Flawless” still has his signature unidentifiable samples (seriously, is that a wind chime? a xylophone?), it serves as a brief break from Young’s brand of dark atmospheric hip-hop. This is a song to wake up and get dressed to. This is a stepping-out-the-house-in-the-morning song. Seriously, “Flawless” is the soundtrack to the most productive day you’ve ever had in your life. According to Young, “‘Flawless’ got made toward the end of the album. I had been feeling like I was letting myself go and letting people walk over me in a way, not standing my ground and being me. I freestyled ‘Flawless.’ I wanted to make it something you could play in the summer/day time with the windows down.”

“Take Off”

“Take Off” is the second single off the project and is an example of Young when he’s 100% in his comfort zone. Somehow he’s able to make a motivational song about hustling and being true to yourself that still feels like something you can only bump post-breakup or late at night. According to Young, “I had been listening to a lot of Cudi and Cudi inspired the songwriting on that: ‘Just a ni—a from the land / came up rocking tight jeans.’ I’m from Cleveland and I remember when it wasn’t cool to wear slim jeans, but I like Cudi because he’s always stayed true to him, and in his music youu can tell he doesn’t give a fuck what you think. He’s telling his story. So I wanted to tell mines.”

“Take the Night Away”

The title track is where you can really hear Young going out on a limb for this project. Let’s be real: he probably isn’t a great singer, but his eerie ghost-like vocals complement his atmospheric beat perfectly. This track is magic. According to himself, “‘Take the Night Away’ was the shift for me. My first time, like, believing in my voice, no Auto-Tune, just trying it.”

All-in-all, Take the Night Away is an amazing project. It really is the perfect night ride soundtrack and ultimately marks Young’s break from being known as just a SoundCloud producer. No word yet on tour dates, but in the meantime you can follow him on Instagram, SoundCloud, and listen to TTNY on all major streaming services.

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