Underrated albums of 2020, Vol. 2: Kacy Hill – Is It Selfish If We Talk About Me Again

Kacy Hill’s GOOD Music tenure was uneventful. Now as an independent artist, her music can shine without lofty expectations

When Kacy Hill first emerged into the mainstream as a feature on Travis Scott’s “90210,” it was apparent that she was a star in the making. Prior to that, Kanye West’s infamous GOOD Music label had signed her to a deal after West heard her promotional single “Experience” on his The Yeezus Tour in 2013. Clearly, he saw her potential before anyone else did — a very Kanye thing to do.

Though Hill has a soothing voice and a good ear for beats, she was, for the most part, mishandled by GOOD Music. All the music she released under West’s imprint had pretty much gone by the wayside. With a disturbing lack of label-backing and nearly zero marketing for her debut album Like a Woman, it seemed like her career came to a jarring halt nearly as soon as it began.

GOOD Music has received its fair share of criticism for squandering young talent —  like Desiigner, Cyhi The Prynce, Valee — so it’s understandable that Hill decided to cut ties with West’s once-legendary label. With her departure from the imprint came a more stable release cycle for her music. Despite not having dropped a full album in 2018 or 2019, she released a handful of loosies that would keep whatever fans were still tapped in after her split.

Then came her sophomore album Is It Selfish If We Talk About Me Again. Released entirely independently, Hill’s newest album is not only a return to form but an indication that she’s confident in her own lane of indie-pop.

Kacy Hill made her album without it sounding like a glaring attempt at re-emerging into the mainstream. Her songwriting on tracks like “Much Higher” and “Everybody’s Mother” proves that she can not only sing the hell out of a dreamy pop ballad but write one with extreme care and tenderness.

The sole feature comes from Francis and the Lights on “I Believe in You” and the pairing is as natural as you’d expect. The group is also a GOOD Music signee but their chemistry together is simply an example of what could’ve been if the label had treated her music with the same level of importance that they treat Big Sean and Teyana Taylor.

Is It Selfish If We Talk About Me Again is the type of album you’d put on a Sunday evening in August. It sounds like the summer ending, despite an early May release. It’s chill, relaxing, and thoughtful enough to keep your attention both by the gentle instrumentals and by Hill’s introspective and reflective songwriting.

It’s also a testament to releasing music independently. GOOD Music clearly had a winner on their label and didn’t know what to do with her. It’s a shame that this is such a common occurrence in 2020, as independent artists have proven time and again that they know best when it comes to their own music. Is it surprising? Not really. At least Kacy Hill figured it out.

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