This is the kind of project that brings about an immense feeling of warmth when you listen. The artist has managed to successfully incorporate various elements from a number of genres. The opening and title track Say You Love Me is initially reminiscent of electronica, just slightly; perhaps it’s the mellow sound of that tribal drum. Then you move forward into a beautifully jazz driven and deeply soulful song, complete with hi-hats, subtle guitar solos, and a gorgeously smooth leading vocal performance. The voice itself has enough value within the sound to carry the song solo, but when you fuse it with such flawless production, the music becomes so much more. And this continues throughout the EP.
Truth is a track that runs with that soul edge even further. You really get a chance to revel in the vocal sound now, and it’s also the first point at which you really notice the intricate beauty of the lyrics that Tim Qualls features within his music. This song has such a hopeful vibe to it, at the same time as soaking you with a really gritty and uplifting sort of rhythm and attitude. There’s a certain bit of swagger here, a smart and stylish presentation of ideas and sounds, but with a huge amount of honesty embedded in the lyrics. That’s an undeniable bonus; an indication of realness, vulnerability, someone you can really relate to as you listen. As the beat picks up, the hook sinks in, the rhythm takes you captive, and the voice just seems to get more and more intense as the passion and the music build up. A superb track, great musical substance and fantastic song writing.
Track three, I Drink, is a pretty huge moment within the EP. Crafted together merely with the sound of a thick and mellow drum beat, the occasional flicker of an electric guitar, a few peaceful chords added with keys and synths, and that beautiful leading vocal – the simplicity of it’s strength is overwhelming. The emotion expressed in this song is explicit, far more so than the previous two. In fact, it seems as though you really get closer and closer to the feelings behind the music, the further and further you delve into the project.
As the song itself progresses, the vocal harmonies that present a choir of sorts really bring about a massive moment of reflection. This song is stunning, more so with every moment that passes. Structurally speaking, it’s a simple piece of music, but the parts that make it what it is are each performed with impeccable focus and grace. It’s a beautiful song to listen to alone, at full volume. The kind of track you could play over and over again to help you find yourself a little; a song to relate to, that relates to you, and makes you feel better. At the same time, it’s likely to bring about a series of shivers if you were to witness it being performed live. A solid combination of the two worlds.
Easy To Conquer draws your attention to a joyful and mellow rhythm, accompanied by a lush and smile inducing horn section, just lightly scattered across the backdrop of the track. As a song, it’s another one that makes you think, makes you really appreciate the lyricism, which, by this point, you’ve learned to know as genuine and reliable – in terms of being fully able to switch off and let the sound and the words guide you away. The hook is fantastic in this track, used rarely, but with great effect, and surrounded by addictively melodic verses and jazz-infused musicality. A wonderful experience of good vibes, and once again, superb production that has let each and every element shine brightly throughout.
Take It Slow is the final track of the release; a clever choice, as rather than prepare you for the end of the music, it thoroughly takes hold of your mind and your body, in a way that makes you pretty devastated that the whole thing is almost over. This song is a beautifully constructed work of art, those gospel like building blocks are again fairly simple, yet all they need to be. Your attention is held by the rhythm, the organic sound of the claps, the seductive smoothness of the guitar, and, as always, the lyrics and the passion of that leading vocal – captivating any remaining moments in which your mind might otherwise have been tempted to wander.
The music is incredible, really; there’s nothing that needs to be changed about it. The focus is consistent throughout the project, by this I mean that nothing has been thrown in there to fill out the gaps, nothing has been added to make up the numbers. There are five tracks here for a reason, and they each play their part in making this a genuinely memorable and outstanding EP. It’s a massively enjoyable and fairly enlightening experience to listen in full. Everything you love about real music – live music, organically made music – is here, in the form of five brilliantly written and captivating songs. An artist well worth getting on board with.