Progression isn’t about staying stagnant — nor is it about abandoning your underlying ideals. This is a sentiment explored in the arc of rapper Tae Groove’s new LP, New Waves Old Ways, the 11-song follow up to 2017’s Finding Direction. “This album means a lot to mean cause I took over a year putting it together as far as picking songs etc.,” the rapper explains to AAHH. “[Also] I stepped outside my comfort zone a lot on the project.”
While not completely night and day, as Tae seems to have the same energy, the vibe of this project is noticeably different; the flow structure has been tweaked, and in many spots — like “Lifestyle” and “The Weekend” — are much more melodic in nature.
There are a few topical regions he explores, from following his own path among the adversities of his environment (“Livin My Life”), winning by staying true to his vision (“Plan”), Love (“Saved”) — and repenting on past mistakes (“Can I Live”). Overall, the aura is relatable with enough depth to find gems in his bars with repeated spins.
“Livin My Life” actually comes across as the standout; its almost anthemic chant of trusting the process as prescribed by your own soul has an almost sense of rebirth to it that really plays well to the album’s theme of new beginnings (waves).
Ultimately, New Waves Old Ways is movement music for anyone trying to make it this game — and any game, for that matter. You can’t expect to take the same steps repeatedly and achieve different results. Tae is making his way and investing a lot into his grind independently — diversifying his sound along the way without losing his footing. The album closers “Take It Slow” and the testament to his grind “No Sleep” pretty much say it all.