Originally published through Tone Deaf.
From the opening track of Infinity, Chance Waters presents a loose, mellow style of hip hop; a mix of breezy acoustic guitar and low-key rhyming.
World-weary lyrics are juxtaposed against wistful, optimistic melodies, building up to the consistently catchy choruses. It’s what would happen if Jack Johnson decided to try his hand at rap.
Lyrically there isn’t anything particularly original here. Most of the checklist of thematic material for an Aussie hip hop album is ticked off. Heartbreak? Check. Society is fucked? Check. The Future? Check.
The bridge of the title track, ‘Infinity,’ is mildly condescending (“do you really understand infinity? It never ends,”) and the refrain – a minute of the phrase “out of figure eights” – is just confusing.
He namedrops world problems when rapping about the things he’s annoyed about – refugees, the environment and computer kids all get about a line each – but there’s nothing to get really fired up about.
The strength of this album is in its melodies and harmonies. Soothing acoustic guitar plays more or less throughout, with various harmonic trickeries weaving in and out. Subtle piano chords, precise drumming; a flute even chimes in for a while at one point during ‘Neverland.’
There are a range of well-selected indie songstresses (Paris Wells, Bertie Blackman) taking over for the choruses, which are always likeable. Waters himself has an unfailingly agreeable set of vocal chords, which he applies with equal appeal in turns at both singing and rap.
Infinity is chilled out and thoroughly listenable, but it won’t change your life.