Young adulthood, by nature, is supposed to be a relatively angsty time. And besides all of that growing up stuff Gen Z’ers will have to face down, count climate change, unabated income inequality, the potential collapse of Western Democracy, and four more years of a septuagenarian leader of the free world among a laundry list of ailments the youth of this nation will be asked to remedy.

And while the sweet-voiced R&B artist Zrae doesn’t much touch on the sociopolitical, the angst on the singer’s debut full-length “Better Left Unsaid” is thick. There’s plenty here for for the lovesick and forlorn. Yet, the album’s nine songs chart a series of emotional peaks and valleys–a relative rollercoaster ride of contemporary R&B-infused pop.


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Undergirding a mix of electronic beats and atmospherics, clean guitar melodies serve as the album’s indie-compass, keeping the collection affixed to the rails as the song’s chug through downtempo soul searchers like opening tracks “Afraid” and “Trust Me”, before ascending on dynamic tunes like “Played” and leaning into revelry on “Contigo.” Released earlier this year, “Chrome Hearts” is the collection’s standout track, bringing the artist’s vulnerability and swagger, as well as the best elements of the album’s overall aesthetic together in its most cohesive.

Click play to ride Zrae’s “Better Left Unsaid”