There's something strangely appealing, calming and inviting about the cover of Cory Jreamz's four-track EP, Polysemy: A wine glass on a chair under a tree. But what's the story behind it?
The young, artsy rapper, a 17-year-old senior at Pearland 's Glenda Dawson High School, may have been raised in the wrong decade. He uses words like "rad" and "awesome" too freely, but tells Rocks Off there's no real significance to any of it.
Ironically, the lack of real definition around the album's face, as well as the appeal and calm it exudes, draws a correlation with the overall feel of Jreamz's music and the very concept of polysemy. The definition of the word polysemy is the capacity for a sign to have multiple meanings.
"Each song on Polysemy can seem to have different meanings," says Jreamz. "You can think I'm talking about school, when I'm really talking about a girl. You can think I'm talking about a girl named Victoria, but I'm really talking about a ghost."
So was Victoria a real person?
"I left that for the listener to decide," Jreamz says.
Of course playing mysterious only works when your music is good, otherwise who gives a damn. But Cory Jreamz shows incredible maturity in Polysemy. His album is not good for a 17-year-old. It's plain good.
Take "Love Is You," a soprano saxophone-laced track with a beautifully sung chorus that will take hold of your short-term memory and repeat in your head all day (the video above is an a cappella version; the version on the EP is the better listen).
His lyrics are coated with beats that give off flutters of his musical influences Sade, Marvin Gaye and Pink Floyd. It's filling and substantive cruising music for those who like melodies and choruses that send one into a trance-inducing state.
There are parts of the album that strive to be jazzy, spell-binding and thought-provoking all at the same time, and yes at times, there are brief moments when the 17-year-old emerges in a few bars here and there. But for the most part, his lyrics are smart and charming enough to get him to the gate of the ball park respectable Houston underground rappers play in.
Bottom line, Polysemy is a proper debut. It represents quality over quantity. It's worth the download.
"I still want be somewhat of a mystery," he says. "Leave some room for listeners to grow with me over the years. These four songs are just an introduction to me. Each release shall progress with the listener learning more and more about me."
Let the story of Cory unravel.