Nurko, Illenium, and Valerie Broussard bid for track of the year status with ‘Sideways’
“Who thinks I should collab with ILLENIUM?”
Nurko floated the possibility of “Sideways” exactly one year ago on Proximity’s upload of his “Take You Down” remix. Wind the clock forward to today, and an unthinkable triple-play between one of Dancing Astronaut‘s Artists to Watch in 2021, one of Dancing Astronaut‘s most-anticipated IDs of 2021, and one of Dancing Astronaut‘s most-anticipated albums of 2021 has been brought to life. Simply based on the reaction to our tweet when Nurko offered it out of the blue in the center of his Park ‘N Rave stream, the two shared an understanding that the coalition already had a potential track of the year pennant. If you weren’t among those who had “Sideways” added to your library as the clock struck midnight on the East Coast, feel free to stop reading for a second to swap out the live rip of Nurko, Illenium, and Valerie Broussard’s more-than-anticipated liaison for the real thing.
Firstly, the single’s artwork alone is an absolute work of art—as are all of the designs on Illenium releases. “Sideways” is the unassailable Fallen Embers inductee that any Illenium backer—from either the pre-Ashes years or present-day—would fall head over heels for. When Illenium was greenlit the opportunity to welcome the original for himself during his Ubbi Dubbi finale, the sheer fact that thousands in the Texas crowd were able to sing it back to him, when it’d only been played once during a drive-in event two months prior, spoke for itself. “Sideways” strides through everything you could reasonably solicit from a meeting that’s been a long time in the making between Nurko and Illenium, complementing their respective classes of fiery, cunning melodic bass and bringing in none other than Valerie Broussard, who takes the duo’s already clean-cut foundation and lays down a hot-blooded vocal that could only sit atop a track of this weight. With a summer landing date for Illenium’s fourth album on the horizon, “Sideways” is further reassurance that he’s positioning the LP to hold its own against some of his greatest work.
Featured image: Bobby Bengal