Soulection is a musical collective and label founded out of Los Angeles in 2011. They provide a platform for dozens of rising Internet artists to extend their reach into the worldwide phenomenon that is music culture. Soulection consists of DJ’s, producers, and rappers such as Sango, Mr. Carmack, Goldlink, Esta, and many others that have gained Internet stardom within the past few years. Soulection has grown exponentially and even have their own weekly show on Beats 1 Radio where they do interviews and premiere new music. It’s definitely worth checking out.
The collective started the year off by dropping a compilation album titled Promise Once More. This album acts as an extension of the signature electronic R&B style that Soulection has come to exemplify. Throughout the album you find jazz influences and live instrumentation mixed with trap production, synthesizers, and 808s. The cover art is a blacked out rose, which foreshadows the themes of love and heartbreak throughout the record. Overall, this album is all about the chill vibes and feelz.
Wassup by IAMNOBODI & Insightful starts off the album with low-fi vibes and looping drums reminiscent of early 90s hip hop and DJing. A scratched in “Wassup player” repeats throughout the track. Wassup introduces a very relaxed vibe that you’d envision at an after party smoke session.
Kandi by Dave B is a soft ballad in which he’s rapping and singing to his lover that she’s sweet like candy and how he wants to eat her up. It’s a very chill song led by soft guitars and background vocals. Kandi tells the charming tale of budding love in the modern day.
Honey by Esta gives us a smooth and relaxing instrumental that is sure to get you into your feelings. Keys, low bass, and soft drums are the highlights of this track. The lack of an actual narrative allows your imagination to paint whatever story and experience you hold dearest to your heart. Likely about a relationship that went awry as much you didn’t want it to.
Love by J.Robb & Beya Likhari featuring IshDARR is a highly jazz influenced song with a soothing trumpet that provides color throughout the track. Beya Likhari croons to her partner about enjoying their time together. The instrumental strikes the image of an underground bar where local jazz musicians come to show off their chops. IshDarr gives a passionate guest verse complimenting the softer vocals by Beya.
We start to increase the vibe and tempo with A Lover’s Bounce by Jared Jackson. The refrain “That’s what I feel in my heart” gets scratched throughout the song. It provides an upbeat and light-hearted expression of love and playfulness with saxophone and light lead synths that’s sure to make you bounce.
A Moment, Her by oJ is another jazz influenced track that acts as a palate cleanser at the midway point of the album. It’s extremely minimal in it’s execution consisting only of Drums, Bass, Piano, and a few synths as the track goes on. Very chill.
Now we get into my personally favorite half of the album. 🙂
Murder by ROM featuring Jarreau Vandall & Emmavie seamlessly fuses live instrumentation with the intricacy of electric sounds. Murder takes us on a love high with sweet guitars riffs and lovely vocals by Emmavie singing about her lover. We’re also introduced to a tropical samba vibe before coming right back into the traditional R&B vibe with beautifully layered vocals.
Moving On by Sivey featuring Emmavie raises the heartbeat with a pulsing polyrhythmic expose of guitar, atmospheric vocals, and pulsing drums. Syncopation is prevalent throughout the hook, which gives you a smooth yet pounding high of emotion. We also have another feature by Emmavie. This time the vocals lack any cohesive narrative, opting for single syllabic tones and repetitions of “Moving On” throughout the track. This track pumps you with a high of energy.
Time Off by starRo & Kyle Dion is one of those sexy R&B songs you can’t help but bob your head to. The instrumental consists mainly of staccato organs, drums, and arpeggiated synthesizers coloring the background leaving the vocals to be the main driving force of the track. The beautiful falsetto provides so much stank-face material; I can’t help but love it.
The last quarter of the album provides all of the feels. They give us the sweet, sweet lows that come with love. The pain of heartbreak is laid bare for exquisite catharsis.
No More by Da-P & Mars Today exposes heartbreak repeating, “I know we were never meant to be”. The soft and pretty vocals coupled with the dark pads and heavy 808 bass provides the emotional lament of a relationship gone awry. The feels, fam.
As of Late by Insightful featuring Naji, gives us heart-wrenching performance about falling in love. He repeats “I’m Falling For You” over a soft piano progression, increasing in intensity each time. You can feel the love and pain in his voice. The instrumental is just as powerful with winding strings, harrowing background vocals, and a brooding piano.
The album ends on a soft, yet somber tone with Omens by James Chatburn. The dark vocals sing of a man’s personal demons with haunting background vocals. The bass line drives the track along with the minimalistic drums and piano. The last words are “Peace again, I’d be a fool to believe in it”.
Top Tracks: Love, Moving On, No More, As of Late.
Listen to the album here.