So much can change in a year, and nothing better demonstrates this than the collaborative history of Ejay Mallard. and fellow Houston artist Mynd. "Reparations.", the name of their newest single together, is a piece of closure and confession wrapped in 808s, silky vocals and melodic harmonies. This R&B classic feels like SIR meeting Jhene Aiko on a chill hip hop beat, and thus creating a lullaby that heals the broken adult heart.
"Reparations." opens with Mynd's relaxing vocals over 808s, strings and dream-like synths. The beginning of this track is patient, and allows the listener to feel before being met with any lyrics. In Mallard's first verse, he confesses to being too cocky to believe in love. For him, the female protagonist of the song once was just another girl that he swiped left or right on in dating apps, but he
soon discovers that this girl is actually heaven sent. His vocals perfectly illustrate this discovery by transitioning into angelic falsetto on the line "but who is true? I know God is real, I see him in you". This choice is intentional, serving a greater purpose than words ever could, with the high notes painting an image of someone who feels lighter and no longer weighed down by darkne
ss. Following not too far behind is the soothing chorus: "You came into my life and made everything alright at the right time... how can I repay you?" which gets handed off to Mynd, who sings it once more. In her verse, it is revealed that Mallard is not the only one who has been changed by this relationship. Mynd confesses to having been too skeptic
al due to past relationships to believe that she would ever find love. She masked the bruises of her past by looking for fun, not realizing that she would find something serious in the male protagonist. There are symmetrical themes within both artists' verses that highlight one's deliverance from a toxic view on love.
We get a more in-depth look into this toxic mindset regarding love when examining Mallard's 2019 collaboration with Mynd. The title alone, "Ruin Me.", serves as the antithesis to the entire purpose of "Reparations.". In the 2019 track, Mallard demonstrates that he has clearly been hurt in the past, yet has come to romanticize and expect pain from any relationships to come. Mynd, on the other hand, embraces her own carefree approach to relationships and warns Mallard that he does not want what she is capable of. This tracks contains a dystopian parallel universe version of the same characters that we come to see healed in "Reparations.". The transition from the darkness of the first track to the honest, healing R&B jam that we have now is engaging, as well as an exciting new artistic direction to follow. While the visual for "Reparations" is not yet out, it, as well as Ejay Mallard's future projects are highly anticipated.