Summrs: the king of pluggnb


screen capture from Summrs back 2 da basics I Ticker Exclusive

Jason Obiechefu

“Stuck In My Ways” marks the sixth studio album from rapper Summrs. The project clocks in at 61 minutes with only one feature from fellow artist Desire. Throughout the project, Summrs continues to develop and experiment with his sound while pushing the “pluggnb”, a fuse of trap, rap and R&B music, genre further.

Pluggnb is a new subgenre of hip-hop that emerged in 2017 from the collective Slayworld. Slayworld was an unofficial collective of rappers, artists and producers that would often collaborate with one another. Some of the more notorious members of this collective include Summrs, Autumn!, Yeat and KanKan.

Pluggnb is known for its high-pitched plugg percussion drums paired with melodic R&B singing and rapping vocals. Summrs is often credited with being one of the genre’s founders since he was one of Slayworld’s most prominent members.

According to Kankan, the collective disbanded a few years ago but some of the producers and artists still collaborate with one another. It is rare to find Slayworld artists collaborating nowadays and this is apparent in Summrs’ album since there’s only one feature. In his last album there were no features from the group.

The album’s first four tracks were produced by fellow Slayworld collaborator BenjiCold. On these tracksSummrs is almost exclusively singing about his failed relationships, drug use, work ethic and is occasionally braggadocious about money. Familiar themes are found throughout the project in addition to other pluggnb songs.

Summrs begins to rap on the fifth track titled, “Pure Motion” featuring Desire, signaling a shift in the project. From here on out most of the album’s songs feature a mix of both rapping and melodic singing vocal performances. It was difficult to pinpoint where Desire’s part starts because his voice and performance sounds almost identically to Summrs, making the track progress and transition very smoothly.

On the tenth track, “Addy Geek”, Summrs changes his vocal delivery by slurring his speech as he raps over a distorted instrumental. This is the only song where he utilizes this technique because the song is about his drug use experience. Summrs raps about his Adderall usage and how it’s affected the decisions he’s made.

Although this is a pluggnb album in full, there are songs where the production departs from the plugg sound. This is most apparent between track 16, “Blood Tears (Interlude)” and track 19, “IKYMMG.” The production on these tracks is more atmospheric with drum sounds being less frequent. Summrs uses this change in production to pivot to a more vulnerable sound as he sings about his childhood, love life and the loss of his grandmother Brenda.

The following track “Pilates” is more upbeat and one of the standouts on the album because of its catchy chorusand production. That paired with a repetitive synth and pluggnb drums creates a fantastic song. From here on out the album transitions back into traditional pluggnb beats.

“Stuck In My Ways” feels like a more niche album compared to Summrs last release “Fallen Raven.” . Throughout “Fallen Raven” Summrs implemented a more mainstream trap sound into his music.  The release of “Stuck In My Ways” feels like a return to the pluggnb genre.

Compared to some of his fellow Slayworld members, Summrs is putting out quality pluggnb music while still finding ways to experiment with the sound. Autumn! and KanKan’s last studio albums were generally received with mixed feelings from fans, while Yeat has moved away from pluggnb altogether to a more rage and alternative trap sound.

Coming off the commercial success of  “Fallen Raven,” and “Stuck In My Ways” Summrs and the pluggnb genre may gravitate towards mainstream music. As some of his contemporaries fall behind, Summrs is positioning himself as the top artist within the genre.