Ugh, Those Feels Again
Snoh Aalegra's You Keep Me Waiting, from her last album, Feels, is one of the great neosoul tracks of the past decade. It just is. It sings so much in three minutes or so. Oddly then, sitting here discussing that point at the OL HQ, hunched, prison-style, over a bowl full of lovely chilled grapes that 'taste like cotton candy...' I am hearing some push back against Vic Mensa's contribution... I dunno, I think he's done 'right... When Snoh Aalegra sings though, oh wow! It's like a kitchen conversation towards the very end...
"Tell me you love me in October
You said I made you want to change
But here we are another summer's over
It's all the fucking same
This conversation is getting older and older
You keep me waiting
With the worst of you
And you call that love
You give me nothing
But I still can't get enough
And I call that love."
That's a bit of the lyric, but you've gotta hear her sing it...
She was a Prince-prodigy, a Prince kid from way back. But for a while now, she's not been. She was signed to Sony at the age of 13, her music now is released through the ARTium label of her famed (Kanye West+manymore) producer No ID. Snoh's the most exciting Swedish musical export since Abba, but there's a lot of great rnb coming out of northern europe. Check Helsinki's Bobby Ozora too.
Snoh's Feels follow up, has perhaps the album title of the year, Ugh, Those Feels Again, (are women allowed humour in music and arts?) Anyways... It begins with the disconcerting helium sped up vocal intro of Here Now, before easing into the very glorious, I Want You Around... OMG! Thee Emotional Quotient is authentic and high. The timbre of the keys is languid. Gosh to be wanted a fraction of that much...
"All I wanna hear is Innervisions on replay, Sit right next to you..."
Of course, coursing through the record is the Jill Scott/Erykah Badu legacy. You know how much music and culture owes to those two, so no quibbles there.
Find Someone Like You is classic serendipitous rnb yearning over a beautiful bed of strings. Like peak Mariah, you'll be convinced...
Throughout Urgh, the conversational intimacy, if you're emotionally literate in any way, if you ever wanted someone in any way. You'll understand.
So, that's that, that's Snoh's business. Telling you like it is, even if you don't know it yet.
I like to look at things while listening to things I am not looking at. But doesn't everyone.
Memories are Now, is a bold and inventive collection from Jesca Hoop who says each new record begins with a musical identity crisis