Categorized | Arts & Entertainment

Student rapper MoonManFlo releases new EP “High Chair”

Robert Dinkins
Viewpoints Editor

Derrick Florence ’18, better known as MoonManFlo, released his anticipated EP, “High Chair,” on Feb. 4 of this year. After creating music for roughly a decade, including releasing his first song on MySpace, MoonManFlo is ready to approach an even wider audience with his sound. Encompassing only six tracks over 16 minutes, MoonManFlo offers us a taste of what’s to come and let me say: it’s very sweet.

“The inspiration for ‘High Chair’ came from all of this time I’ve had out of a relationship and the comfort I’ve found in discovering myself, and enjoying being to myself. All of the songs sound like I’m referring to a significant other but I’m really having conversations with myself,” Florence said.

Knowing this aspect is definitely important to listening to this album. While songs such as “Fwu Better” and “Wrong” would be more than appropriate after a breakup, the album offers much more to the listener knowing that Florence is talking to himself. Often times after breakups, we rarely offer ourselves the opportunity to learn from our mistakes and instead seek validation from our friends. “High Chair” reminds us that self-love is more than just possible but could also be a necessity for stepping in the right direction.

MoonManFlo found the process for “High Chair” similar to his previous project “Azthetic,” but wanted to answer more questions. “The process for “High Chair” was to listen to my project “Azthetic” which did deal with past relationships and ask myself “What next?” after each song. As Azthetic was more upbeat, I decided to go a little darker tone with “High Chair” while still maintaining the chill vibes.”

The darker tones he speaks of can be found in the production, because the lyrics are anything but dark. Offering rhythmic vibes, easy to digest words and a delivery that seems like he was having fun in the studio, you are left replaying the album over and over because of its seamless cohesion. “Sacrifices” offers a nice jazz sound with smooth lyrics singing of how “a laser hit my soul too.”

“Clyde” seems like the song being played on a sunny day in New York, walking around the sidewalks and admiring all the different people. He speaks of getting away from many of the things that could stress us out. While we may not be able to get away from all our problems, having someone else to rely on can definitely make your problems easier. “Stupid” is the last track, but it has a special place in Florence’s heart because it is the first song he has produced since 2009. The song also offers Flo’s commentary at the end, saying, “Everybody wants to know what I would do if I didn’t win, I guess we would never know.” Powerful.

MoonManFlo’s talents have no bounds, from music writing to producing beats. He was even able to find the time to create his own music video for the song “Tell Nobody.” Using students from campus, the video depicts how Flo envisioned the song. He said, “So the idea for ‘Tell Nobody’ is the interpretation I want people to originally get from the song before they realize all of the songs are addressing myself. So, in this case, the guy is making a pitch to a girl he likes that he’s interested and if she doesn’t want to make it a big deal in public, they can keep it on the low. She hears the guy out, but I won’t spoil the ending for anybody.”

MoonManFlo also wanted the characters to represent different aspects. “Patrick represents the ‘Azthetic’ side of me ­­— the lovestruck kid willing to put himself out there to be in a relationship. Kidi represents patience. She could’ve completely ignored him or left in that moment but she stayed and let him give his pitch. I represented the idea of the album. You don’t have to search for happiness in other people if you haven’t found it in yourself yet,” he said.

That message is definitely found in his album. Flo definitely wants people to get something from “High Chair.” “I hope that people can find it in themselves to spread positivity, practice self love and self care, and dance a little bit to enjoy life as it is through its ups and downs alone or with others,” Florence said.

You can listen to “High Chair” on all major streaming services and you can search YouTube for the video for “Tell Nobody.” Check out some of the new singles he has released, too — MoonManFlo is here to stay.

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