AUGUST 08 is 88rising's latest signee, and he represents something new for the collective. The FATHER EP, August's debut project, is a stark, emotional journey through a fractured childhood. For a first go, FATHER is  surprising in both its degree of vulnerability and general polish—this is R&B for the 22nd century, an unflinching transmutation of emotion into music. 

We spoke with the L.A.-based artist in February when his anthemic "Funeral" dropped—"I was going through a tough time with my family," he said. "I started achieving some kind of success as a songwriter, and I didn’t have family to enjoy it with. I talked to my manager about it and he was just saying, “Write about it.'"

The resulting EP confronts some heavy truths about loneliness, family, and absent fathers. But two things buoy what could have turned into an emotionally exhausting listen: well-timed jolts of energy ("Missed Calls" and "Lately" hit especially hard) and August's incredible voice.

But the EP's best moment may be its simplest. "Sick Days" employs little more than a guitar and those crispy vocals—he has a real gift, and with friends like Channel Tres handling production ("Father Issues"), August is making music with veteran confidence. 

The whole project is on YouTube as a continuous 25-minute clip. Stream FATHER below, and buy it here.