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