Mei has been consistently expressing his artistry since 2018, and the Chicago native plans to kick off 2021 with his best song yet. “Reserve” is the whole package, flaunting impressive vocals, carefree flows, and sincere lyricism.
The track begins with Mei’s silvery voice, switching between warm vocal pockets, while also showing off his capability to reach a high tenor when he so chooses. The song then drops into what seems like Mei’s stream-of-conscious for an intimate, but quick, thirty second verse. Mei manages to pack a whole lot into these thirty seconds, from missing the Midwest, yearning for life at a slower pace, and coming to terms with his Chinese heritage, mentioning that his “eyes say southeast.” The verse is rapped calmly in a conversational tone, almost conveying the feeling that Mei is tired. This would make sense, though, since he’s “used up every last drop,” and is living life at the mercy of his reserve tank.
The track takes a sudden turn toward the end, switching from unhurried to rushed. The beat’s tempo speeds up for the last thirty seconds, and Mei goes from beautifully repeating “reserve,” to yelling “all of my reserve” into the microphone. In this mood shift, Mei uses his brilliance to covertly express his feelings behind a stoic disguise. In these last few seconds, the LA-based artist gives us a glimpse into the angst that comes with constantly dreaming about what his life could be, and yearning to accomplish his vast goals. While Mei might be beginning 2021 with “Reserve,” we look forward to him releasing a full tank of music this year.