In his new single, ‘Mentally I’m Somewhere Else’, Smilez raps, “I’m not too proud to ask for help”, and with that simple line, he delivers a whole range of complex implications.
A vocalist who is more than capable of expressing himself with great nuance, Smilez might sound like he’s damaged, but underneath the tough swaggering style he’s immensely optimistic. His strong character and humble presentation ensures that his listeners give him the sympathy he needs, as he bravely reaches out with lines that are as heartbreaking as he sounds wounded.
Born in Dallas but now making his home in LA, Smilez can lay claim to millions who have reached back to him when he’s sought their support. His previous releases, including 2020’s ‘Head Shoulders’, and the follow-up track, ‘Sit Back & Relax’, have been rewarded with countless streams.
With ‘Mentally I’m Somewhere Else’, Smilez confronts the issues of heartbreak, longing, addiction and substance abuse, societal acceptance and rejection, and the precarious nature of mental health. All the while he stays steady as a rock, assured of himself, and completely composed, no matter what tries to knock him down.
‘Mentally I’m Somewhere Else’ isn’t just a demonstration of Smilez’s vocal talents and rapid-fire verses; it’s also a showcase for his musical creativity and talent for arrangement. He spends most of the track rhyming accompanied by nothing but a piano, serving as a sonic metaphor for Smilez’s tranquil inner state.
In yet another expression of his talents, the music video for ‘Mentally I’m Somewhere Else’ was conceived and directed by Smilez himself. The clip sees the artist, dressed in his signature yellow, rapping at his mute and downcast self, filmed in greyscale. From time to time, sequences of Smilez as a toddler intersperse the modern day clips: surrounded by friends and family he is shown to already be fully in possession of the integrity he maintains today.