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Jazz Fusion

Music

Landon Sears gets sexy, sensual, and scented with new single ‘Shea’

If R&B got drunk on Cristal one night and ended up in a lost-weekend New York hotel-room tryst with smooth jazz, then the unexpected offspring a few months later might sound very much like Landon Sears and ‘Shea’; a mix of Blue Note deep groove jazz, smooth R&B, and a little touch of old-skool hip-pop thrown in for good measure. ‘Shea’ has one of the catchiest pop choruses dropped so far this year (so much so that we’ve been singing it for the last couple of hours since first hearing the track), a perfect emotive story in the ‘shea butter lotion/the scent she leaves my home with/whenever I undress her’ lyrical hook.

Sears’ vocal is superb, suiting the track perfectly, sounding chilled, easy, and languorous atop the horns, grooving bass, and Rhodes piano, the track overall sexy, sensual, and fun, clearly having as good a time as, it seems, Sears and his fictional fragranced heroine.

If ever a track had the perfect crossover of serious musical credibility, groove, and sheer radio-friendly commerciality, it’s Landon Sears’ ‘Shea’. The album ’88.1’ from which it comes was released on January 30th(Sears’ birthday); you can hear ‘Shea’, and the rest of ’88.1’, on Soundcloud. Follow Landon Sears on Instagram and Facebook.

Review by Alex Holmes

Music

Benny Elom lays down ethereal soul in their indie jazz fusion single ‘I Do’

Essex, UK-residing Afroitalian R&B singer-songwriter, Benny Elom, has released their ethereally soulful single ‘I Do’ which unravels as an all too indulgent blend of RnB, jazz and soul.

The mellifluous single explores romantic uncertainty without lacing any bitterness or melancholy in the soundscape, instead, through their humility, the artist reminds us how pure love can be. With his affably honeyed lyricism, his mesmerising vocal timbre and the sense of modernity which he brings through jazz fusion, Benny Elom’s sound is a recipe for success.

You can check out Benny Elom’s latest single which officially released on February 5th via SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

 

 

Music

Moon Rabbit Retreat have released their psychedelically interstellar single ‘Sine Language’

Mixing alt-rock, prog, electronica, jazz fusion, and elements of funk, is never an easy task, but New Jersey experimentalists Moon Rabbit Retreat do just that with their new single ‘Sine Language’.

There’s something for everyone here; seventies TV incidental music, soaring meandering Rick Wakeman-esque keyboard excursions, Pink Floyd-like multi-layered catchy choruses, Neil Peart drum explosions, and some epic synth and guitar sounds, across the nearly seven-minutes of this, the lead single from their new EP ‘Habitat’ (available from the band’s website or from Bandcamp). It’s excellent, with ascending interwoven parts which feel at once familiar and encompassing and never exclusionary, some epic musicianship, and a pretty fitting play on words for a track title, too. It doesn’t come much better than that.

Check out ‘Sine Language’ – and download the album – from Moon Rabbit Retreat’s website; follow the band on Facebook.

Review by Alex Holmes

 

Music

Sav Izzi – Mad Chill: avant-garde jazz funk-fusion

Modern avant-garde jazz funk-fusion probably isn’t a formal genre, but it certainly needs to be on the basis of Sav Izzi’s ‘Mad Chill’, the title track from his debut album ‘Mad Chill Sessions’.

A graduate of the famed Musicians Institute in California but hailing from Chicago, Illinois – the home of Chess Records and that perfect blend of blues, funk, and Motown known as Chicago Soul – and playing with the funk band BabyBrutha, Izzi presents us with a multi-instrumentalists delight, gorgeous mellow piano melding with jazzy guitar, snappy rim-shotted drums, and a smouldering collection of brass and woodwind, to create a mind-bending soundscape, part Louisiana parade, part smoky soul club. There’s a collective of some of Chicago’s finest young musicians here with some serious groove and chops. Overall ‘Mad Chill’ is a delicious, compelling look into the full ‘Mad Chill Sessions’ album itself.

You can hear ‘Mad Chill’ on YouTube, and check out Sav Izzy here or on Facebook.

Review by Alex Holmes

Music

Desiring that real love: New Orleans singer/business owner L.E drops hot single ‘Want’

L.E is back with her phenomenally crisp vocal delivery that will have you listening and again on her single ‘Want‘.

With a loving memory of her late grandmother firmly entrenched in the deepest parts of her heart, L.E (Ellie) is a spectacular American singer-songwriter who has a rare ability to somehow fuse classical, gospel, RnB, and jazz all into one incredibly inspiring sound. With this loving memory with her each day, she has blossomed into a musician and also thriving business owner who teaches private vocal coaching at summer camp and at her Beyond the Stage LLC studio in New Orleans.

After learning her trade and excelling at The New Orleans Center for Creative Arts and Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, this talented and inspirational creative has made it her mission to help her communities musicians to follow their dreams, showing that it is possible no matter what obstacles come your way in life.

You get the feeling that you are listening to a truly remarkable woman who makes music to love with. Her voice transcends traditional genres and pre-conceived notions and is like a fresh breeze blowing in after a hot and steamy day; her coolness and calming voice heals all sunburn from this wild world of scorching energies.

”Love me analogue not digital.”-L.E

Her Southern charm is such a pleasure on the soul as her voice blends so sweetly with the sensual but classy beat. She sings about wanting that real love and nothing more or less. The story of wanting to be with that special person so that you can love so deeply and with no doubts. This is a visually-pleasurable journey that takes us into this loving woman’s eyes who is looking for something real, far away from the quick-click dms’s that ultimately are a waste of time and effort.

Want‘ from the lovable L.E is a statement of intent from a successful woman who is done messing around and wants that real love that should exist more in the world. With a fabulous vocal delivery and real lyrics, this is a stunning song that is best played late at night with the bubble bath ready, cold beverage chilled and candles lit brightly.

Hear this voice you will never forget on her Spotify and see more on IG.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music

Ramiro Pinhiero breaks the monocultural mould with their sweet jazzy serenade ‘Quatro Ventos’

‘Quatro ventos’ – or ‘Four Winds’ – is the latest track from prolific Brazilian-born guitarist Ramiro Pinhiero; beautiful, jazz-influenced Latin-American, the product of Argentine and Brazilian parents and a musical education including time spent in Barcelona and the United States, Pinhiero lists an impressive back catalogue of recordings and collaborations with some of the greatest names in Spanish and Latin guitar.

From new album ‘Sentido’, ‘Quatro Ventos’ mixes those same Brazilian and Argentine leanings with European influences and instrumental jazz, the guitar itself providing a vaguely Maracatu rhythm to the track, Pinhiero’s masterful fingerstyle intertwining with jazzy clarinet courtesy of Gabriel Amargent (in turn mildly reminiscent of D’Rivera or Valdez) and the stunning rhythm section of acoustic bassist Horacio Fumero and drummer Nicolas Correa. It’s at once sultry, sexy, and subtle and moody and hot, the lead instruments of Pinhiero and Amargant dancing around each other over that sublime backbeat, each bringing their passion before teasingly wheeling away once more. Like dancers in a samba, it’s a masterful blend.

Hear ‘Quatro Ventos’ on Spotify now; follow Ramiro Pinheiro on Facebook.

Review by Alex Holmes

Music

BexX feat. Lady Nade remind us that optimism isn’t cancelled with ‘All That You Dream’

For their latest single, ‘All That You Dream’, Bristol, UK-hailing artist BexX teamed up with Lady Nade and went bolder than ever with their ‘Genrefluid’ sound. Non-conformity has never sounded more soulful.

Jazzy, sultry, eclectic, and infinitely sublime are all apt adjectives to allude to the dynamic mesmerism on offer in All That You Dream, but discernibly, the single offers much more than words alone ever could. The theatrically baroque soundscape conjures plenty of imagery as it invites the listener to cast away nihilism and pessimism when taking the next step. As plenty of people are now in the position of not having much of a choice in taking change in their stride, there’s no danger of over-exaggerating how essential All That You Dream is.

The humbly artful exhibition of mould-breaking talent provides 4:32-absolving minutes of escapism which simultaneously reassures you that optimism isn’t cancelled.

You can check out All That You Dream via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Harry Baker Opens Up Conversation with his Jazzy Soul Pop Track ‘Talk to Me’

To affirm the belief that there is always a silver lining in any given situation, breaking Alternative artist Harry Baker has released their lockdown-inspired and lockdown-created single ‘Talk to Me’ which celebrates the sense of community which has transpired from physical isolation.

While many people within the industry have been hit hard by the pandemic or have simply resigned to apathy, other artists are using music for its true purpose; to communicate wisdom and offer connection.

With their infectiously soulful approach to the soundscape which mixes elements of Blues, Pop and RnB with lashings of nuancedly accessible Jazz, it isn’t only the sentiment of the single which will leave your soul sated.

To extend the distinction of their sound, Harry Baker tends to lend from a non-linear timeline when it comes to their influences. You’ll find 90s grooves alongside even more nostalgic elements of Blues and Jazz. Yet, nothing about Talk to Me feels archaic.

With the subject matter address in this compassionately essential single, each and every component feels raw and urgent. From the dreamy hazy shimmering guitar tones to the robustly blaring yet succinctly melded sax solos, each component amps up the level of emotion while simultaneously offering resolving catharsis as you lose yourself in the lyric-less verses which have been left bare to emphasise the state of loneliness we’re all feeling now.

Everything in the production neatly and synergistically falls into place thanks to production help from Alex Linder (Flood for the Famine) and mastering from Pete Maher (The Rolling Stones, The 1975 and U2).

Talk to Me is far from the UK and Spain-based artist’s first achievement. With three albums under their belt, plenty of attention from BBC introducing and having played with the likes of Jamiroquai and Yolanda Charles, they’ve certainly made their mark on the industry, but it is easy to feel like the best is yet to come.

Talk to Me is available to stream via Spotify. Or, you can check out the community-created official music video which released on November 29th via YouTube.

To keep up to date with the artist’s future releases you can follow them via Facebook.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

The Spice Cabinet serve a finesse-fuelled feast through their latest single “Bittersweet”

With a cinematic Jazz ensemble quiescently quivering beneath a poetically enticing spoken-word monologue, The Spice Cabinet’s latest release, “Bittersweet”, is captivating from the intro.  

From there on out, the Neo-Classic soundscape demonstrates its efficaciousness in arresting your rhythmic pulses with the subtle yet striking fluctuations in zeal and style, leaving you eager, but assured, you’re in masterfully safe aural hands.

With the nuance exhibited in Bittersweet, it comes as no surprise that Beijing’s 11-piece award-winning Jazz fusion collective have amassed plenty of acclaim. Frontman, arranger, pianist and trombonist Terry Hsieh is able to bring modernism to a genre consistently perceived as archaic. Perhaps more pertinently, he is able to make a plaything of your psyche through his ingenuity.

Bittersweet is available to stream via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Variety has released their mercurially playful Pop-Hip-Hop-EDM Hybrid ‘Dancing On Ice’

Variety is a performing and producing duo from Space Coast, Florida, and like their home state ‘Dancing On Ice’ is a perfect melting pot of influences and styles.

There’s a definite East-Coast hip-hop-influenced pop drive to the track, but like the Sunshine State itself there’s a definite Latin-American feel in places, with an added sprinkling of jazzy beats, and just enough ‘EDM’ to add sparkle. There’s an ‘Akon’ feel to the vocal, for sure, and enough tempo and stylistic shifts to constantly entice your attention. ‘Dancing On Ice’ waits until you think you know where it’s going before playfully mixing things up with an impish little grin. It’s mercurial, whimsical, and mischievous; that can never be a bad thing, right?

‘Dancing On Ice’ is on Spotify. Follow Variety on Instagram.

Review by Alex Holmes