REI AMI: the 25-year-old, Seoul-born, Maryland-raised rap/pop crossover, success story.

She is not your average rising pop-star. Raised in a strict Christian household, REI felt she had to fit her parent’s mold or else. That wasn’t until she found creating music was her vent; a way to express herself and break that mold. REI’s parents fully endorse her dream now and so do a lot of high-profile producers and critics.

I’d describe her music as two-sided. On more than one occasion, you can hear 2 distinct sides of REI emerge in her songs. For example on “DICTATOR” you get a sense of rage and hostility for the first 2 minutes of the track, only to turn into a soft, Jhene Aiko-ish tune. The same can be heard on “SNOWCONE” and “FREAK”. I think it’s pretty nuanced.

My favorite REI AMI track is her new tune with Aminé called “do it right”. And yes, they do do it right. It’s basically all I’ve been playing this past month.

I love that “do it right”s cover art has the best verse at the bottom… “Every conversation with myself’s like “Why couldn’t you be somebody else?”. It sums up the song’s message perfectly: regret will always been lurking around the corner, but it never does any good. You can wish you were somebody else or wish you had handled a situation better all you want; however, the present stays the same.

REI also inadvertently points to her battle with depression in the opening verse
“I’ve been upset, filled with regret
Over the same little messes
I wouldn’t call it depression”
Something she opens up about in numerous interviews. My favorite is INSIDER.

I’ll have to admit… I’m brand new to REI AMI and her “Hello Kitty with a knife” persona. On the other hand, the complete opposite stands true for her song sidekick Aminé. Here’s an artist that has been absolutely on fire for the past 3 years and we don’t see him slowly down. Good For You in 2017, ONEPOINTFIVE in 2018, and Limbo this past year; his lyricism is on it’s way to perfection and he’s been able to showcase his pipes. This track is no different.

These two fit together like fries in a Wendy’s shake: it doesn’t make sense until it does.

Stream more of REI AMI below. I’ve been digging the end of “SNOWCONE” a lot recently.