Solange Knowles is known, whether for good or ill, for the fact that she is the sister of one Beyonce Knowles. For years has been able to hold her own and even surpass the range and tone of her sister in many tracks, vocally that is. Needless to say that she has not disappointed this time. The vocals are crisp clear and on point, very lightly resembling Whitney Houston in tone and ease of range; especially with the organ accompaniment in the background. One critique is that it could be too low in comparison to the backing and where you might expect more of a Lulu James‘ esque husky power, you get Solange’s very gently balanced tone which while lovely to listen to is somewhat lost amongst the mix.
However there are a few things that may not appeal to everyone. Firstly, the intro lasts for a good, maybe two minutes too long and was far too cluttered to begin with. It is made dissonant and distracting by the disjointed seemingly random electro synth effects that make the whole thing sound as if it was recorded in a menagerie and one is attacking a flamingo. And the upbeat vibe of the whole thing? Rather than getting your ears ready for a thriving bouncy Madonna-esque, give all thumping sound, the track is layered with what then sounds like keyboard chords, giving the impression that you are then listening to something more remenicent of the Eurhythmics or Shena.
Even once the lyrics are added; though the arrangement was fine and of the usual intro-lyric-chorus-lyric-chorus-bridge-outro formula; the backing honestly doesn’t quite seem to fit together with the lyrics or the overall tone of the music and where the vocals, and in part the harmonies, are near perfect, the track seems let down by a lack of thought behind where it is going. There’s no clear peak point. There’s a hint of neo pop electro indie-ness and sometimes a solid neo ninties pop ballad. Rather than being a mash up between the two it leaves your ears wanting for one or the other rather than the whole track in its entirety.
The track is made far more pleasurable towards the end, when the backing breaks off and you are left with just the vocals and a gradual build up in accompaniment leaving the track to focus just on Solange’s voice and a better accompaniment of sound: this time stripped down with just a single synth beat added to gradual layers of keyboard and drum bass.
Until the menagerie starts up again. And after that period of silence, this time you’re left wondering who stepped on the cat.
Not quite a fan, needless to say.
Maybe this was meant as a new underground club scene sound. It becomes very clear after a few listens that the track has been very well, if maybe a little outlandishly mixed and without sounding too disparaging it really does sound unlikely to do much than get everyone reaching for the nearest WKD as they wait for the song change whilst getting a bit tipsy pre-night on the town. It might take some listening to the entire album to get a true feel for this song; but be wary of spending much more than the ‘free’ label in downloading it on its own.
This weeks verdict: grab it whilst it’s free and if you’ve missed it just stream it on Spotify.
Download Losing You
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