As underground R&B came into prominence with artists ranging from Frank Ocean to James Black to the Weeknd to Miguel, perhaps none feel as vulnerable on record as Arthur Ashin, recording as Autre Ne Veut. His wonderful 2013 album Anxiety was defiantly maximalist whereas his contemporaries were burrowing inward.
On “World War Pt. 2,” the first single from the forthcoming Age of Transparency (out October 2 via Downtown), Ashin doesn’t change his sound, as he instead doubles down on the musical choices he leaned on on his 2013 effort. He was joined by a female vocalist on the “World War” from Anxiety, and that voice returns a minute into this new single. “Everywhere you want to be is not there, face it,” she sings, fueling the notion of displacement that ails Ashin on the track. “World war can last forever,” he sings at one point, struggling just to stay alive.