Arona Mane might be Australia's own Kaytra with this Nas re-do
Australia's answer to Kaytranada returns after his invigorating rendition of Major Lazer's Boom.
No matter what genre, a song's backing instrumental is a crucial factor to what makes a song good. Look at Kanye West's The Life of Pablo and contrast the reception between it's release and Yeezus - The Life of Pablo is, lyrically, one of Kanye's strongest releases to date commercially. It's no My Beautiful, Dark, Twisted Fantasy, but his lyrical work on Pablo packs a punch and has got more people talking about his work than ever before, yet despite this, has suffered pretty heavily in terms of professional reviews (unless you count Pitchfork's 9.0 - a highly debated topic within fans of both Kanye and the blog). Then, compare it to Yeezus. It's a relatively simple album lyrically, but the heavy, conceptual electronic overtones in the production saw many people label it as trailblazing and that really reflected in the reviews. Keep that in mind when you listen to Nas' 1994 release Ain't Hard To Tell and this rendition of the track by Sydney-based beatsmith Arona Mane. The original, released in a time considered the golden age of hip-hop, plays heavily with bass and percussion, with light touches of strings and Michael Jackson samples (Human Nature, if you're trying to figure out the sample), but Arona Mane really manages to update the original's beat and general vibe with his remix of the single. A hard-to-classify blend of Kaytranada-esque future-funk, traditional rap influences and creative sampling updates Ain't Hard To Tell into a more modernized, innovative piece, with a beat sporting the experimentation and darkness you would expect from a Tyler, The Creator production. It's weird and wacky, but Arona Mane manages to somehow use it to not only capture the charm of Nas' vocals in the original, but really give it a 2016 push.