Omar Apollo is an up-and-coming icon.
Also known as Omar Apolonio Velasco, this 23-year-old singer-songwriter started his music career back in 2017. His success story involves making it big off of SoundCloud while working two jobs at Jimmy John’s and Guitar Center. His insane guitar skills can only be described as the endless riffs of “Stairway to Heaven” but after hours. He has two EPs that are available on all music streaming platforms (Stereo and Friends) and Apolonio is his first-ever studio album. While the overall sound of Apolonio leans toward R&B with strong funk undertones, there’s also a lot here that could be categorized as alternative. Apollo proves himself as a formidable force on Apolonio, even showcasing artistic parallels to the likes of Prince (yes, that Prince).
As a Mexican identifying artist living in the United States, Apollo often uses his music as an opportunity to introduce listeners to the Spanish language; his discography has several songs that are either partially or fully in Spanish. On Apolonio, you can hear his Hispanic roots in “I’m Amazing” and “Dos Uno Nueve (219)”. On the latter track, his usual electric guitar turns acoustic and makes you feel like you’re right in the center of Plaza de Cataluña in Madrid, Spain. Dare I compare it to the scene in Cheetah Girls? I dare.
In addition to Apollo’s Hispanic influence, Apolonio has a lot of R&B tendencies—not dissimilar from Daniel Caesar. The R&B sounds on this album present themselves in slow tempos and intimate lyrics. The lyrics gently wash over you as you listen, making you challenge everything you thought you knew about true love. It’s the kind of music you listen to lying in your bed, exhausted, staring at your ceiling fan spinning around and around. You contemplate your entire existence and want a song that moves at the same glacial pace as your tired mind. With lots of funk undertones, Omar Apollo utilizes the occasional electronic beat and synth to supplement his guitar skills too. The softness of his sound makes for an ideal chill hangout with that special someone 😉
Still not sure if Omar Apollo is the vibe you’re looking for? Check out my top three tracks, and they will surely sway you.
- The Two of Us
Stream Apolonio below and find out which top three songs are your favorite! You might surprise yourself and fall in love with the whole album.