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After years of producing for some of the industry’s most popular names including Kendrick Lamar and YG, Los Angeles native Blxst looks to take off with his career, one he begins with his debut EP, No Love Lost. The project combines the most ear-pleasing qualities of both R&B and hip-hop, both being genres that he weaves in and out of with ease and impressive finesse. The campaign for No Love Lost dates back to 2019 with his breakout single, “Hurt,” a track that finds him bearing the pain and disappointment of being done wrong by a close friend with a look of undeterred nonchalance. “I can’t sit around waiting on n****s,” he says. “That just ain’t what a hustler do.” The pain cuts deep but his pride is strong enough to handle the grimacing burn that results from the disloyal action.
No Love Lost seeks loyalty, not love, from a ride or die confidant to provide a remedy to the stresses of life’s dangers. It’s a message he makes clear on “Overrated,” as he falls in line with what 21 Savage said on his I Am > I Was highlight track, “Ball w/o You.” “You can love somebody just by being attached / See loyalty is a action / You can love or hate me and still have my back.” Blxst has no interest in having someone who has his heart, rather, he desires someone who has his back and will always be present in his time of need, something the Donell Jones-sampling track highlights. “You know we good, no reason to be explainin,’” he sings. “Just want your loyalty, the love is overrated.” Love as we know it requires too much for Blxst’s liking, from lowering his guard to keeping another person in mind with every move. Loyalty however is a bare minimum commitment and that, to Blxst at least, is enough love for him.
Blxst’s comfort when loyalty leads the way in his relationships is crystal clear. “Wrong Or Right,” one of the many bright spots on No Love Lost, praises his love interest for their unconditional support despite his constant absence while he builds an empire for two. “You be thuggin’ through the lonely nights,” he says. “Always knew you was the soldier type.” Yet, despite this moment of praise, Blxst also seeks confirmation that their tenure as his unconditional confidant will not come to an end in the near future. “You ain’t never folding, right?” he questions. “Even if I’m wrong or right.” However, this bright moment proves to be nothing more than a honeymoon phase that quickly comes to an end.
While the hustle continues for Blxst, the lonely nights also add up for his love interest on “Be Alone.” A once-thrilling ride has been reduced to a boring routine, one that has far lost its appeal and adrenaline-fueled satisfaction. Soon, complaints about his presence (“You be trippin’ on the time we don’t spend”) and fears that come with his occupation (“You be paranoid hearing sirens again”) rain on him. These complaints and fears confuse Blxst as he believed the relationship’s roles were well-defined. “I thought you wanted a hustler, girl, it come with that,” he sings before adding on the chorus, “You signed up, said you’d ride to the end.” Blxst condemns the feelings of his love interest despite being completely worthy of some condemnation of his own as he fails to realize that his perception of love, which emphasizes loyalty above all else, is not common practice to most individuals.
As the EP concludes, passing through “Just Say’n” and “Searching,” Blxst once again ends up as a lone ranger left to wander the streets in hopes of finding a new partner who fits his lifestyle. His perils with love come from approaching it like a written contract, listing the terms that come with being with him while leaving no room for compromise or adjustments down the road. Compromise is a foundational aspect of love, but the unpredictability that comes with its presence is something Blxst can’t cater to as it interferes with his hustler’s ambition and tunnel-visioned focus to make it out of his current situation. While it may be tolerable in the beginning, its inconvenience and the sacrifice it requires from his partner become unbearable in the end.
The phrase “no love lost” signals the continued presence of love despite the end of a relationship, but Blxst himself admits loyalty replaces love in his romantic endeavors and when they fail to last, he seemingly comes out unscathed with love since what was never given can’t be lost. However, the point Blxst seems to make on this project is despite failing to land upon his ideal ride or die confidant, Blxst escapes the mess without having to lower his guard and give away love. Because of this, he may never experience the true beauty of love, but Blxst finds resolve in knowing he’ll also never have to experience its pains. All in all, No Love Lost emphasizes the flaws of a man whose only goal is to be a flawless hustler.
No Love Lost is out now via Red Bull Records and Evgle. Get it here.