CHARI + The Howlin’ Truth shattered the Soul Blues mould with their fiery Alt Blues track “Fight for Me”. The adrenalizing hit has quickly garnered plenty of attention with Soul fans who quickly realised that there has always been a gap in the market for aggressive Soul.
If you’ve looked at the state of the world recently, you’ll realise that the fiery aggression is more than justified, it’s essential. It compels you to feel the artist’s boundless frustration with the lack of progress in a society where saying that black lives matter is still a controversial statement for some. The track was written as an ode for all the lives who have been wrongly taken too soon. It’s a promise that the fight will continue and an invitation to join in and be as bold and unapologetic as CHARI.
Fight for Me is crafted with roots-deep rhythms and other timeless elements of Blues. Yet with the high-octane energy which every element of the track was crafted with, it hits so hard you’ll never forget the first impact.
With mind-bending super-sonic instrumental breakdowns and sleek infusions of Hip Hop, Rap and kaleidoscopically distorted Psych, Fight for Me unravels like nothing I’ve ever heard. If you put Led Zeppelin, Skunk Anansie and Ray Charles in an aural blender, you may just get an idea of what is in store when you hit play.
Rapper, songwriter and vocalist CHARI has my undying respect, love and adoration after hearing Fight for Me. I can’t wait to hear where she takes her aural revolution next.
You can check out CHARI + The Howlin’ Truth’s second single Fight for Me for yourselves by heading over to SoundCloud.
Review by Amelia Vandergast
Even with the amount of new music being made every day, with sheer weight of collective imaginations, the genre splicing experiments, the fusing and fusion of styles Garrison Carver seems to be on to something new here. Yes, there is a trippy trap beat, a cool R&B vibe and a rap delivery but that is then cocooned in something totally unexpected. Around these more expected elements he wraps a dream-pop haze, chilled psychedelia and electronic washes.
It’s confusing, but experience tells us that is a good thing, expectations are made to be subverted, rules are made to be broken and new musical horizons are their to be explored and DD does all of those things and more. Blissed out hip-hop? Ethereal R&B? Dream-rap? Are those even a thing? The fact that you have to invent whole new genres to put the music in is an indication of just how original this music is and how singular and lateral Garrison Carver’s thinking is.
What you think Tenderhooks are all about depends on which thread you pick up on first. Pick up on their lyrical content and you will find the same strange characters that Ian Dury or perhaps Madness peopled their songs with, pick up on the back beats and you find a soulful Ray Charles vibe. The weird-pop quirk, which runs through the song, is pure Bowie and the strange New Wave edge is very talking Heads. It is pop heading into rock; quirky rhythm and blues doing a spot of Avant Gardening and the ghost of any number of Bonzo Dog Band members haunt the hidden corners of the song.
Normally journalists have a hard time finding a label for a band because it doesn’t sit that easily in existing genres. Tenderhooks present a different dilemma as they appear to spend some time in almost every genre you can think of and make up a few of their own along the way!