Album Stream: MAVI “Laughing so Hard, it Hurts” + Video: “High John”

Mavi, the critically-acclaimed North Carolina-based rapper has shared his sophomore album Laughing So Hard It Hurts and a new video for “High John”. The 16-track album is a warm, welcomed exploration of Mavi’s triumphs and pitfalls over jazzy instrumentals, extraterrestrial compositions, and a poised creative vision. The thematic undertones of the album find all roads leading back to Mavi himself––with the pointed and poignant bar-work encompassing his own existence, relationships with loved and lost ones, and balancing ambitions and expectations for his future. The intro “High John” kicks off the album with some of Mavi’s most prolific introspections yet, all over a gliding electric guitar and a subtle piano, with the opening lyric “Praying they still make love in my size” encompassing the duality of tenderness and distress sprinkled throughout Laughing So Hard It Hurts. The summery visual for the track finds Mavi enthusiastically performing the track in a pristine field alongside famed producer and long-time supporter Alchemist & close friend and collaborator MESSIAH!, as well as manning a one-person rowboat and navigating through boundless nature. On “My Good Ghosts”, the Charlotte MC spits quick-witted, lover-boy raps accompanied by an instrumental courtesy of Coffee Black wrapped in a celestial sample chop and soulful vocal tones. With topics surrounding the lightest and darkest moments of his life, the love and support of his tight-knit community, and the prospect of possibly being a family man in the future, Laughing So Hard It Hurts are the rhythmic contemplations of an MC wise beyond his years, trying to make sense of the complex path laid before him. In the words of Mavi:

“I’m grateful for everybody still wanting to hear what I have to say, for waiting on me past when I expected everybody to have to wait on me, for being willing to hear me and appreciate me in different ways as I grow and change, and for all the love that got me through and changed my life forever.”

Mavi is hitting the road the latter half of this year for the High Holidays 3-date West Coast tour in December alongside an impressive cast: Curren$y, The PharcydeBuddy & Phony Ppl. He will also be joining famed producer Kenny Beats for his DON’T OVER THINK SHIT show with Rico Nasty and Paris Texas in Los Angeles on 11/5. Stay tuned for more tour date announcements to come.

The lead-up to Laughing So Hard It Hurts has been highly-anticipated following a stunning 2019 debut album Let The Sun Talk, a welcomed follow-up EP End of The Earth, and last year, being hand-selected by Jack Harlow, whose resounding admiration was made obvious with a shoutout on his latest album, to accompany him on tour. Prior to the release of the album, Mavi shared a pair of well-received singles, “Baking Soda” (prod. by Monte Booker) and “Doves” (prod. by Dylvinci). Sonically, Mavi wanted the album to almost sound almost like a “lullaby”, so he enlisted this specific pair of producers to provide almost a more affectionate touch to his work than in his previous efforts. The influences that are wrapped up in Laughing So Hard It Hurts track the day-to-day apparatus of Mavi’s life––from studying the hard-hitting raps of Babyface Ray to admiring the soundtrack of the animated cult-classic show Adventure Time, the 16-track album offers the most holistic view of his life to date.

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