Tom The Mailman released the sorrowful, yet soulful EP Yuki Onna, telling stories of Japanese folklore but adapted to modern American love tragedies.
Raised in Georgia, Tom The Mailman’s discography is made up more by his singing than rapping, though he can hold his own when he does choose to pick up the pace. Throughout much of the album, he takes advantage of soft piano loops and poppy 808s to carry his crooning vocals. The title of the EP Yuki Onna is based on a female ghost in Japanese culture, also known as the Ice Princess, with a direct message to her on the second track of the project.
“Oyuki’s Secret” separates Tom from a majority of the competition in just the first lines, “you plot on a bag for a living, I sit at home in the studio plotting on getting the baddest of women.” While most artists are disregarding women and hunt for a deal, Tom prefers to be more lowkey, to not hide his emotions. The track focuses on lost love between him and his hometown sweetheart but wants to work things out. After speaking with Tom on what Oyuki’s secret is, he replied that “the lies that the character is being fed are so satisfying that regardless of her dishonesty he’ll accept any and everything.” It seems that he has been able to see the relationship for what it is, built on lies.
The track “I Don’t Need You” has Tom changing the way he feels for his girlfriend, who now seems to be his ex. Pushing her away and all the complaints she had of his flaws, he is able to move on independently. Also, the track has more characteristics of a pop track from the warm, upbeat 808 to Tom’s catchy delivery and lyrical content. Coming in at less than a minute and a half the song is packed full of energy. The song is a lesson in self-care and valuing oneself more than a toxic relationship.
Closing out the project is the double track, “It Takes Time//The City,” focusing more on rapping these tracks are self-reflective and celebratory. Trying to better himself and his community, Tom looks to educate all those around him that they can lead a better, happier life. Near the end of the first track, he beats himself up over his past mistakes and internal flaws in regards to patience and honesty. A sample of a few people giving advice maybe to Tom directly, is the undercarriage of a beat switch to more peaceful production. Still rapping on the second half, Tom brings some melody with his rhymes this time.
With Yuki Onna Tom The Mail Man successfully blends Japanese legends to be analogous with his romantic woes. His melodic delivery and lulling tone provide a calming project filled with misfortune but a glimmer of hope for the future.
Stream the project BELOW!