Wallie The Sensei released his debut album Golden Child on July 23. The bold 17-track mixtape might have been stronger with just 10 tracks, but it is still ripe with celebration, hard work, and triumph. Despite attempting to redefine a west coast sound, I think Wallie would, like many artists, still benefit from more experimentation with his sound.
Throughout Golden Child, Wallie shows us his struggles but ultimately celebrates his success. Wallie’s album includes his breakout single “Scandalous,” which has over 1.5 million plays on Spotify and features artists Mar and Yah-L. Wallie just recently began his music career, but he is already building a fan base.
Golden Child also features Wallie’s single “03 Flow” which currently has over half a million views on Youtube and over 1.5 million streams in the United States. This song quickly caught fans and received praise online and on the radio. “03 Flow” honors Wallie’s friend and fellow recording artist 03 Greedo who is serving a 20-year prison sentence at this time. The song starts the album off very strongly because it is so passionate and full of love.
More Specifics About The Music
“I’m just trying to play this game, / Sensei don’t feel a thing,” Wallie sings in “Bitch Please Pt.2.” This comes after a string of the line “Bitch please / I don’t care” in the chorus. While the song felt a little misogynistic, my understanding became that the woman cheated on her partner, and was trying to get him to stay with her after he found out. Cheating would understandably deeply hurt someone and sow distrust in their partner. But at the end of the chorus, Wallie emphasizes his desire to play the game and claims he doesn’t feel anything. Wallie seems to feel like he has to close off his emotions in order to make money, overcome badly designed systems, and find success.
The album is heavy with autotune, a tool Wallie enjoys exploring and using, despite not needing it as a crutch. I enjoyed some of Wallie’s uses of autotune more than others. For instance, the autotune in “Stop Ballin” accentuated his vocals with cool sounding and creative harmonies and layers. The song switched up the general sound of the album, bringing a softer, slower vibe, while still carrying Wallie’s passion.
Wallie The Sensei’s Live Performance
The artist recently performed live in, fittingly, the streets of Compton. In the recorded video, his melodic voice, stripped of autotune and everything but piano, resounds powerfully outside. Singing “Bompton to Balabasas,” emotion bleeds through his voice and his frank and clever lyrics. It pulls at the listener.
I would love to hear more tracks from him with bare vocals because, as you can hear, his voice is so lovely. It would also be really interesting to hear him experiment with combining auto-tuned vocals and bare vocals.
I liked the use of instruments in parts of the album as well. For example, the alluring strings (maybe violin) and sci-fi ray gun sounding effect in “Cuisine” created a unique vibe. There was also a nice acoustic guitar on “Fallin Apart,” one of the stand-out songs on the album. Plus, Wallie’s lyrics in this song play with the story of Adam, Eve, and the forbidden fruit very creatively.
Stream this rising Californian artist’s album HERE and find an anthem in something he sings.