Tom Misch is 19. You’ll probably hear that a lot when someone talks about Beat Tape 2, but it’s one of those facts that needs to be reiterated. Not to patronise the man, nor take away any of his accomplishments on this collection, but for the sheer wonder of knowing that there’s someone out there who knows how to manipulate beats and utilise vocalists in a way most seasoned producers have all but forgotten.
There is a youthful tinge to his work, a forgotten halcyon that most of us abandon in the humdrum of life. Opening the album, The Journey might well be suffixed with a time travel tag, as it not only draws us into Misch’s world but also recalls that latchkey innocence we might have dismissed.
Almost everything on this tape has a quality that feels warm from natural sunlight, and Misch makes sure his vocalists have been basked in a similar tone. Carmody shines on Wander With Me, Jordan Rakei delivers instant-vintage R&B on Wake Up This Day, and even a slighty more seasoned performer like Zak Abel gets a new workout on the more dance-leaning Beautiful Escape.
So the beats are on point, the sound is seasoned, but we feel like there’s still a bit more of Misch’s own personality that we could mine – everything is gloriously sunny, but there’s a slight ache for shade. Still, there are enough ideas here to mark him out from the new wave of London producers; as the Tom Misch sound grows, so too will the queue of A-listers wanting to work with him.
Beat Tape 2 by Tom Misch can be ordered here.