Chillin’ in Suncity


Haley Kish

Junior Grayson Powers recreates the cover for Khalid’s new EP Suncity, dropped on October 19. The EP cover gives off a calm, yet depressed, vibe as Powers looks off into the distance with a serious face and an old Camaro in the background. “Khalid’s EP has a lot of emotion behind it and it really affected me a lot. I really feel for his music as it makes me really happy,” Powers said.

Haley Kish, Photographer

Singer-songwriter Khalid, always representing his home town El Paso, Texas, released his new EP Suncity on October 18. After the release of his debut album American Teen in January of 2017, he spent the time between album releases teasing fans with singles and participating in collaborations such as “Love Lies” and “Lovely.”

Following the release of American Teen, Khalid provided his fans with a tour dedicated to his dog, Roxy, that passed away. At the Atlanta concert, Khalid sang songs off of American Teen, and during the middle of his concert, he sang unreleased songs that debuted on his new EP,  such as “Better.”

Before the release of Suncity, Khalid posted a picture on Instagram of the album cover with the caption reading, “A new era.” This symbolizes that Khalid transformed from his American Teen phase, his teenage years, to his Suncity phase with his more mature self. Fans dug deep into the central meaning of the caption on his post.

“‘A new era’ brought joy to me when I first read it because I knew the new EP would be different from American Teen. American Teen’s songs were mostly similar, in my opinion, but with Suncity, Khalid explored himself musically and brought different genres into the EP,” junior Jennifer Dang said.

Suncity released at midnight on October 19 with seven songs, however, two of those songs consist of regular conversation: “913” and “Salem’s Interlude.” “913” sets the idea of the journey listeners travel through while listening to his music, while “Salem’s Interlude” consists of a female talking for the full minute and 22 seconds. Listeners enjoyed “913,” but sadly, “Salem’s Interlude” makes listeners hit the skip button.

“My least favorite song on the EP is ‘Salem’s Interlude’ because I’m more into the music side of things and listening to the singer’s vocals and words they use in a song. In this song, it’s mostly just music playing in the background while someone is just talking on the track,” junior Breanna Knight said.

Even with songs that listeners do not like, the rest of the album compensates with songs such as “Better,” “Vertigo,” and “Saturday Night.” “Better” released as a single before the initial drop of the EP to promote Suncity. “Vertigo” and “Saturday Night” makes listeners want to dance and sing along to the lyrics.

“My favorite song on the EP would have to be ‘Better’ because the beat within the entire song is amazing, and not to mention how killer the vocals sound in this song,” Knight said.

Khalid threw a curveball at listeners in this EP. The title track consists of a duet with the Latin American artist Empress Of who sang the song in Spanish and English. This song provides the EP with more diversity as the rest of the EP consists of songs in just English.

All in all, Suncity shows a new side of Khalid that fans never saw before. This EP makes listeners question what else he has up his musical sleeve. Even though two songs consist of just talking, the other five songs on the EP brilliantly make up for it.

The Chant’s Grade: A