Using a variety of ear pleasing instrumentals, from the saxophone to the trombone all the way through to the string family, it is Paul Moody’s charming vocals that steals the show. A sound originating from a folk and roots style, Paul Moody and the Revelators deliver a classic in their brand-new release “Losing My Mind”, a song that highlights elements of nostalgia, comfort and general music satisfaction.
“Losing My Mind” greets us with a friendly guitar strum, and as the introduction progresses the beating drum follows with an elegant piano, along with Paul Moody’s warm-hearted vocals, completely owning the vibrant atmosphere of the track. The meaning behind the lyrics is actually quite tragic, “And this cheap cocaine doesn’t do shit/It just numbs the depression a bit/And in the morning it’s all gonna hit/Oh oh I’m fine/But I think I’m losing my mind”. What Paul Moody and the Revelators so cleverly portray, is the reality behind everyday life. We may pretend to continue with our day-to-day duties with a content and cheery attitude, but most of the time we are concealing our misery. “Losing My Mind” puts an ambiguous spin on what the song really means, and what is so conspicuous about the track is the confusion it reiterates between the vocals and the melody.
Classic and timeless vibes shoot right through the heart of Christopher George’s music, it is soulful, sassy, chilled and full of emotion and mood. That’s a lot to fit into one song but it is because he has studied the classic sound of the soul greats, the R&B icons and even some of the ground breaking pop writers that he understands just what makes a future classic song.
And if that seems like an over sell, close your eyes, wind back the clock and pretend it is any other decade from the 60’s onwards and this song could fit comfortably within it. Not because it is dated but because it is woven from all the musical threads that never go out of fashion. Would you consider a vintage Rolls Royce out dated? No because it’s built of sleek lines and of a design that transcends fashion. The same is true of Christopher George’s music.
Whilst some people feel the need to pursue new styles, create new fusions and try to move things forward through strange chimeric musical experiments, others are just content to walk classic and familiar pathways. And whilst the dynamic vocal led soul and the emotive deliveries join the dots from Etta James to Nina Simon to Aretha Franklin and on to her own modern R&B peers, Jessie Wagner does that rare thing of bringing something new to the table.
Not so much as in a new aspect but new in that everything seems designed along classic lines but just, well…more. It is more deeply soulful and indeed soul searching, more emotively heart-tugging, more gracefully elegant…just more of everything. It is a difficult thing to do, to visit such defined territory and come away both with something that adds to the musical canon but honours its heritage. Difficult for many, not, it would seem for Jessie Wagner.
Some say that the art of forging new music should be about originality: the idea that if you can find something with no precedent, you’ve truly created. There is another school of thought that believes art is about capturing and evoking the ways once there and now gone: the old school. Sketches on Duality may have their own intentions as artists, but they swagger between these ideas with grace, ease and an undeniable cool.
The name Michelangelo conjures a Florentine artist who could never have known the impact he would have on the world of art. He was a renaissance man who took in culture and then expelled it back into the world with new life. Fittingly, Sketches on Duality have taken this same approach on their track, Michelangelo.
The Vienna-based group exudes confidence as a medley of smooth, jazzy keys lay a foundation for warm, soulful guitar and jagged, inspired basslines. Vocalist Jahson the Scientist expressively dips from spoken word into old school rapping, guiding the listener through reverently influenced old school vibes of jazz and classic hip hop. Michelangelo is a song worthy of its name. Sketches on Duality appropriately bring together two completely different theories on music and in doing so, create art.