Few genres have become as saturated as hip-hop in recent years. But Sani Knight’s latest single ‘Nocturnal’ is a commendable attempt to remedy this.

The West Coast artist’s fusing of hip-hop with R&B and pop is not necessarily novel. Some of the world’s most notable musicians like Drake and The Weeknd are selling millions with similar fusions.

But ‘Nocturnal’ shoots for something darker. It’s tripped-out and disconcerting, with a bite and ugliness to it.

Notably heavy, some of the vocal processing is synthetically treated but this is far from the mumbled warbling that has as much defined modern hip-hop as it has been used to malign it.

The ominous presence of the instrumental continues into the song’s lyrics. ‘It’s not the things that you do/it’s what you say with your eyes’ he remarks to haunting effect. ‘Am I living a lie?’ he questions. Before admitting that he’s ‘still trying to decide.’

The single is clearly tapping into a vibe that’s extremely current. Lil Yatchy’s bold new record Let’s Start Here is one sonic similarity. But where Lil Yatchy went wild with his psychedelic leanings, Sani Knight is more restrained.

Which leads to where I hope he goes next. With more experimentation Sani Knight has the potential to explore some of hip-hop’s odder territories. ‘Nocturnal’ hints in this direction. Perhaps something wilder is to come later.