In a budding career, calculated appearances become as important as the music they accompany. Oversaturate yourself and the marketplace stops caring; underserve fans old and new alike and you get left behind by the mile-a-second slipstream of the internet, forgotten in a culture increasingly fragmented. Rising rappers like Kendrick Lamar and A$AP Rocky fight to balance satisfying their core fans with expanding their reach, all while attempting not to fatigue audiences with their constant presence.
So far in his young career, Chance the Rapper seems to be moving at just the right pace, releasing a highly hyped mixtape that had a summer to breathe and spread, keeping appearances scarce and waiting til the fall to re-enter the fray with new material. Following up his stellar appearance on Lil Wayne‘s “You Song” from Dedication 5—a look that likely revealed the acid rapper to an entirely new demographic—Chance hops on one of the standouts from James Blake‘s Overgrown, “Life Round Here.” It’s a wise choice both from a marketing perspective (two great names that look great together and get the pageviews flowing) and a musical one, marrying Chance’s explosively elastic rhyming ability with one of Blake’s bubbliest concoctions. The end result adds new dimension to the original, a shot of adrenaline to gorgeous melancholy.