Pop Wallace, R&B/pop artist from Carlow, Ireland, just released his latest single, “Out Sick”, in collaboration with Dublin synth-pop artist Boyfrens. The song is a smooth blend of pop and R&B, with nods to early electronica, and a dreamy, trance-inducing feeling throughout.
“I left space. I wanted a feature on this,” Wallace says of the track. As for how he met his collaborator, it was when Soft Boy Records producer Gaptoof ran a series of ‘beat battles’ on Instagram in early 2021, to bring Irish musicians together online in the midst of lockdown. Gaptoof issued a sample, and producers had one week to reimagine it as a new song. The tracks were played on the night, with the best being placed on a mixtape sold on Bandcamp, with proceeds going to MASI (Movement of Asylum Seekers in Ireland). The event was a success, and brought together many unlikely new friends – including an R&B artist from Carlow based in Arizona, and a synth-pop singer from Dublin.
“Out Sick” features effortlessly smooth production, by Pop Wallace himself, and further developed by Shaun Hennessy (Poxy Records). The song’s lyrics deal with self-sabotage, excess, and self-worth. “My portion of the lyrics are really about binging – being aware of the damage I’m doing, and going through with it anyway.” “I know I’ve done this to myself, always picking from the bottom shelf”.
Boyfrens’ verse hides a heart-wrenching reflection on the reality of self-loathing (“if I could I would leave me”). Wallace says of the track’s raw themes, “this song, though hard, is really beautiful for me, because I know it’s real. It’s been therapeutic.”
Pop Wallace is a singer/producer from Co. Carlow, currently based in Phoenix, Arizona. In 2013, he moved to the US, after meeting his American wife in Ireland. “I used to write and play a lot. And then I moved to America and… did nothing for eight years. But the pandemic made my friends start making new music. Soon we’re thinking of starting up a label, and last year, I started learning to produce music.”
He co-founded Poxy Records in 2020, alongside hip-hop producer Willhouse and songwriter/producer Lenny Melon. “Link Up”, Wallace’s debut single, was released in June 2020. It was popular enough to warrant a successful crowdfund for an entire full-length album for Pop Wallace, “Good Boy”, whose limited edition vinyl record became Poxy Records’ first physical release in less than half a year of its existence.
He has received airplay on Cork’s RedFM, John Barker’s Totally Irish Show. on 98FM, and KCLR, and been featured by outlets including Nialler9 and Pop On Down. Wallace has gone on to collaborate prolifically, with other artists on the Irish scene including Cheesmore, Absentee, Sam Healy, Mila Moonlight and WIllhouse. As part of Poxy Records intelligent approach to crafting top-tier Irish R&B and hip-hop, he is fast proving them a force to be reckoned with on the Irish and international scene.
Pop Wallace’s influences include Joji, Frank Ocean, Brockhampton, D’Angelo, Kelis, Justin Timberlake, Blue Hawaii and Craig David. His work thus far has drawn comparisons with artists such as No Rome, Crumb, DIIV, Joji, Frank Ocean and Kean Kavanagh. His music is a blend of emotionally-charged pop and contemporary R&B, most often with a dash of dark wit.