By Nimra Amir, August 29 2022—
Everyone has listened to one album or another about the joys of falling in love with the one. Calgary-based hip-hop artist Kam Prada’s debut album With or Without You which released today is everything but that, as he celebrates the single life.
The relatable album with inspiration from artists like The Kid LAROI or 24kGoldn sets itself apart as it takes aspects of multiple genres from hyper pop and pop punk to rock and rap.
“It flows nicely in the way that it doesn’t feel like it is multiple genres,” said Prada.
All we get the sense of is the different groupings of songs that tell different stories but come together cohesively under the idea that in this life you only really have yourself. This is not to say our relationships with others are not important but that we should not depend on them for our sense of happiness. A powerful message that Prada came about through his own life experience with relationships but also pursuing an unconventional career — especially for people of Indian descent — as an independent hip-hop artist.
“It is a story that has not been told in the way I am telling it in the music,” he said.
He is not wrong — and as great as albums about love are, it is refreshing to hear someone who validates heartbreak through songs like “Never Enough” or “Left Me For Dead” but ultimately shows the triumph of independence as a way to focus on yourself with songs like “Made 4 This” or “DND.”
The song that encapsulates it all is “Like That,” an upbeat song with more emotional lyrics that are easy to connect to.
“I find myself going back to it a lot,” said Prada, referencing the track.
The album — which has been in the works since January — only really started coming together near the end of February when he was jotting down ideas on his whiteboard when it just “clicked,” as Prada put it.
“I was able to be more intentional with the songs I was creating. I had done that on a smaller scale with the EP but not with an album,” Prada said.
He credits his EP Heartbreak Hotel which was released earlier this year as the experience he needed for this album — that he knew, in the back of his mind, was what he has always been working towards.
As a student himself in his last year of university, this just happened to be the perfect time to release the album since when he starts university again in September he says “my supporters will have this full body of work to listen to.”