by Tausifer Osmani
An unfortunate epidemic that plagues the modern world has been the growing trend of individuals who contain ignorance within themselves that ultimately forestalls their ability to accept who they really are.
Riverside native and rising artist Elijah Perkins, simply known as “Elijah,” recently released his new mixtape coupled with a short film “Nightfall” that is dedicated to the thematic value of self realization. The project was essentially written, directed and produced by Elijah, but also featured co-editing from local filmmaker Michael Tukes.
The project took over a year and a half to produce, which included a whole year of pre-production before engaging in any actual filming or video production. For Elijah, time was not an immediate concern, his main focus was towards the quality of the product.
“Why are we feeling as if we need to keep pushing out sub-par material every three months,” Elijah said. “What happened to taking your time time to make a project?”
Elijah indicated that albums used to be an experience for him, but to constantly see a new mixtape be released by the same guy every other month takes away from the allure of an artist. Therefore he chose not to set a designated release date in order to relieve himself of the unnecessary stress of working in accordance to a deadline. Instead, Elijah opted to release the film when he felt the time was right.
The amount of time spent on the project signified that Elijah valued the principle of patience within his work because he knew it would ultimately equate to quality.
“I’m a perfectionist and I believe that there is more to music that lasts rather than the music that is good for the moment,” Elijah said.
The fact that Elijah and his team spent a month primarily mastering sound speaks volumes to how much value he places on his work as well as attesting to the perfectionist bug that drives him to achieve the best product he can possibly create.
The “Nightfall” project’s main aim is to serve as a compass to guide individuals towards the path of acquiring self realization by awakening their true dormant selves and understanding who they are.
“I feel that people are so attuned to the same sort of monotonous lifestyle and there are too many people that are afraid to express themselves,” Elijah said.
The short film explores this phenomenon by depicting a person transitioning through life, but appearing as if there is a void deep within him. Elijah’s impeccable acting chops and diverse artistic abilities are showcased as he adequately portrays a man trying to figure out what he’s doing in his life. The stoic demeanor and expressionless look displayed by Elijah genuinely encapsulates the viewer and establishes a strong relatable connection.
The “Nightfall” mixtape features a thematic sound that also contains instances of randomness that strangely, but cohesively, function under one idea. Anyone new to Elijah’s music may perceive his sound somewhat synonymous with Childish Gambino’s “Because of the Internet.” Like any great artist, Elijah needed a backdrop to develop a sound and utilized elements from that album to establish his own musical identity.
The album is indeed designed for audiences to enjoy great music and discover who they are in the process, but at the same time people should make their own inferences about what Nightfall means to them by analyzing what they got out of it.
The thematic elements of this project is fuel by genuine passion from the artist. Elijah is in a rare breed of individuals, let alone artists, that has found his true calling and legitimately knows what his purpose in life is.
“I always felt like I wanted to be a voice of a generation because I know what my gift is, it’s to teach people to find their gift,” Elijah said.
Elijah truly has the belief and confidence that he can shift the culture in society through the success of his craft by utilizing his eventual celebrity status as a platform for progress. The ambition to become an influential artist avid on his community has become his top priority. One of his main concerns lies with the growth of the future generation and their close attachment to the Internet and social media.
“We live in a society where things are going so quick, the Internet is bringing us together, but it’s also making us alone,” Elijah said.
Many of the children born in the 2000s era are used to the Internet and tend to have their social skills impeded. The oxymoronic dynamics of social media preaches networking, but in the long run creates a bubble amongst individuals that constantly use it. This is an integral stain in humankind that awakened Elijah to perceive the world for what it truly is.
Many rappers don’t blow up because the majority of them lack a strong message that resonates and relates with the audience. All the successful rappers have a message. Drake speaks about love and relationships, Kendrick speaks about the human soul and black struggle, and J. Cole preaches about the knowledge that people are missing in their lives and the ignorance around them. Elijah has noticed this pattern and realized that an artist’s message is indicative of their success.
In terms of future projects in the horizon, Elijah and his team are primarily focused on getting a small tour together with frequent collaborator DJ Baker. The team is also working on producing merchandise for the Elijah brand and merchandise for a company that Elijah and his manager Ronald Meza Jr. Have started called Spirits Of Tomorrow (S.O.T).
The staff and crew will be working on releasing some singles throughout the year to continue the momentum. Last but not least the official “Nightfall” release date will be on June 10. Access to music, merchandise and more can found on Elijvh.com.