Here is the chance to get a listen to the Hottest New Hip Hop and R&B in the “D”
Review – Sam Watson – Release 2 (Full Album)
There is a line in the movie “The Five Heartbeats” that is a critique of Robert Townsends character, Songwriter “Duck”, that goes ‘Donald Matthews (Duck) will be a great writer when he suffers more.’ I reference that line and analogy to say that Singer/ Songwriter & Budding Producer Ypsilanti ( and now Southfield resident) SAM WATSON, who was already a quite accomplished and prolific young writer. Must be in that zone of going thru something right now. With the that type of inspiration, you know something special is in the offing.. I have always been a fan and recognized his talents years ago. But with the release of his latest EP titled “Release 2” AM has raised his pen game to a whole new level. and the title “Release..” must have a dual meaning. He is exorcising a few issues within what comes across as a very personal project. And one that is A1 in concept, execution and sonically pleasing. Lets get into it.. The 8 track project starts off with an “Intro”, that is therapeutic in its solemn spoken dialogue explaining his inspiration for the EP and sets the listener up for the experience, as well as SAM himself.. “Let Go”, the opening salvo finds WATSON electing to let his apparent lover free of their relationship as he feels she is better off with out him. He gives his take on not holding up for his own selfish reasons. He prefers to let his lover go in order to grow. Even if he isn’t a part of it. The ultimate sacrifice . Starting with an almost acoustic intro that picks up to a more rhythmic rumba beat that gives the song a fuller sound to accompany his laid back but confident and rhythmic delivery.. Next up is an Inspiring Interlude called simply “Alive”, that finds SAM examining his place again not just in this relationship, but as a man himself. Its beautiful to witness, and even more so to hear the introspection. He touches Neyo territory and as a songwriter he is blooming and booming!! .. “First Things First” might be the most beautifully aggressive track on the EP. We find WATSON in an almost rant confession in claiming his own responsibility of his condition. He has a lot going on and he is crashing, but trying to still maintain. But it is hard. “Farewell” continues on the theme of loving enough to let go versus holding for selfish reasons. Mr. Watson has clearly crossed a bridge in Love and Maturity. And has come full circle on this project. IT FEELS like a solid album. Lush is arrangement and production. the next cut “L.Y.C>” is a groove to break us out of the ethereal – ness of the album and allows us to vibe. A welcome turn from the heaviness of the previous songs. Closing out The EP “Studio ” featuring good friend Rapper Asaka the Renegade and K. Huff. A remix from an earlier project that also allows us to breathe and know that Young Mr. WATSON has survived and is better for the duration. And ready to move forward.. “Release 2” is an opus reminiscent of Usher’s “Confessions” and even Mariah Carey’s “Emancipation of MiMi”. SAM WATSON delivers a beautifully written and recorded project very worthy of a listen and even more so of industry notice. Its a coherent and themed project in a music world that over stuffs mediocre materiel around one or two decent singles and call it an album. This is a straight player with no skips. R&B is in a good place when we have young artists like SAM WATSON , making music you can feel as well as hear. With a message and a mantra that we all can be influenced and inspired by.. RnBInTheD – Terry Martin
REVIEW – Mikhail Miller – Quarantine & Chill Pt. 2 (Full EP)
Ypsilanti artist MIKHAIL MILLER, is back for another go around with the second installment of his Quarantine and Chill series. The young singer and songwriter wastes no time in getting straight to the point on the 8 track second edition.. Kicking things off with “Its Yours” a growling Bass Ride that sets up perfectly for the sure fire swing number called “Stay Out” featuring vocalist Goldie that is more than infectiously satisfying. It’s got Good Air all around it perfect spring time midtempo banger that allows Mikhail’s tenor room to be fluid. Next up he keeps the ride going with “O.D. On the Way” which he sings in a staccato delivery. The uptempo banger is DJ/dance-floor ready.
Getting back to a seductive but fast paced groove Miller gets an assist from fellow Detroit vocalist Brooklyn Dior on the cut “Nothing On You” it’s a burner. Slowing things down for a minute with the track “Count on Me”, Miller rides this groove to full pay off. Never overt in his presentation or seduction, what makes MIKHAIL MILLER stick out is his pocket play with his pen game and his vocals are always reliable. He never shoots over his listeners head , and stays respectful. Don’t hear that much these days.. Other cuts on the album include Cassie’s Song” and the bonus cut “Deserve”, which fill out a solid second outing.. Stream it if your into the current crop of R&B Cats like Arin Ray, Xavier Omar and Lucky Daye. “Quarantine & Chill Pt. 2”, makes staying in worthwhile.. RnBInTheD.com – Terry Martin
Singer Reign – Come My Way (Single)
Detroit Vocalist SINGER REIGN is putting in more work on the original music front. Around Detroit she is known for her rich and raw tenor. Reminiscent of Lalah Hathaway and Her favorite Jazmine Sullivan, and like them she also has range. REIGN has made a name for herself on the live music circuit in the last few years. And has begun dropping solid music of her own including the newly dropped “Come My Way”.. a Mid Tempo Groover that rides to a Rubbing and Fluid Bass Line That finds REIGN Vocally dancing on the rhythmic groover throughout. Telling her inspiration to Come Her way fo rthe opportunity of something real. The vocal arrangement allows for REIGN to use her aforementioned range to jump from Rhythm to Melody while nimbly flowing verse to verse. Definitely got a good one on her hands.. RnBInTheD.com – Terry Martin
Natasha Blu – Trouble
Its something special when NATASHA BLU drops a cut!! The Detroit vocalist drops gems every now and then and when she does, its a game changer. She has amassed almost 20,000 streams of her sensuous and brooding soulful cuts. Her latest “Trouble” produced by D. SLate, comes along with the release of an accompanying visual that is the artists first. She does not disappoint in either platform. The song talking abut the consequences of contemplation of going further in a relationship, is a Buttery Smooth cut that allows NATASHA who gives us Chante Moore/ to pours her smoldering vocals over into a melting amalgamation of sensuality and vulnerability. NATASHA is always reliable vocally, and traditionally always delivers. The accompanying video features a cameo lead by fellow Detroit artist Drey Skonie and is just as sensual and inviting as the track. Definitely glad to have NATASHA back after a brief musical hiatus looking forward to more from the talented young lady .. RnBInTheD.com – Terry Martin
Zania Alake’ – Tempted (Single)
Anticipation is an acquired skill. One most humans are not fond of. But When things are marinated properly, the result of maturation more than outweighs the cost. As such with the arrival of Detroit vocalist ZANIA ALAKE”s single release “Tempted” . One of my favorite and reliably soulful voices in the”D”. ZANIA has put in her time as both a backing and session vocalist supreme. But we finally get a taste of her buttery smooth vocals in her own project. “Tempted” is a mature R&B Lovers cut, Taking space in the lands of Ledisi , Jill Scott and Kem. ZANIA rides and glides through the song written by ZANIA & Dean Beanz, and produced by Dean Beanz & Kristopher Jahi Crosby. The Rumba type Rhythms mixed with a Contemporary Jazz Piano Overlays make for an inviting soundbed stirred by ALAKE’, into a euphoric Neo Soul Gumbo. A worthy addition to your own sound palette.
Nappi Devi – MUFFIN.(Single)
The lines between Hip Hop and Soul have been blurred for years. Rappers and singers utilized each other to further explore and reach new audiences wit their various collabs. But here lately the practice has evolved into artists who don’t need features, as they are aptly skilled enough to carry the song fully as either rapper or singer. NAPPI DEVI, is such a chameleon hat you will never need to clasify him as more than just an awesome artist. His latest joint, “MUFFIN.” is a full on vibe that finds DEVI in vocalist mode thoughout. ALthough he is an adept rapper by nature. On “MUFFIN.” he turns on his inner Miguel or Bruno Mars in this airy & earnest vibe. Produced by Chill Hop Producer Keem.The.Cipher, the song is a light ride along the lines of Brent Faiyaz, Pink Sweat$ and Khalid, that pulls on the fleeting feelings of wishing your past love well in spite of the heartbreak that comes with going your separate ways .. Perfectly timed for Spring, “MUFFIN.” sets the table for the forthcoming EP from NAPPI DEVI to be called “7.11” dropping in later Spring / Summer..
Drey Skonie – Bad for Me feat. Ametria Peridot (Single)
DREY SKONIE, is a vet of the Detroit music Scene at putting out quality R&B.. And this one is gonna be Big for him. “Bad For Me” has an undeniable swing to it that just grabs you. Its an uptempo banger that puts him in the predicament of wanting whats… Bad for him. Gives me Breezy vibes and can picture choreography to this one smashing it!! In fact there is already a Tik Tok Challenge to this joint!! With an assist from Ametria Peridot , Drey got a winner on this one..Take it for a spin
Mikhail Miller – Quarantine & Chill (Full EP)
Its always great to experience new music and a new (at least to me) artist. , Singer/ Songwriter MIKHAIL MILLER, dropped a timely EP he so aptly titled, Quarantine & Chill a Newly released 5 song EP from the Detroit by way of Ypsilanti vocalist. The EP is a Joyride from start to finish. Starting with “Say it”, the EP has got a Bounce to it that permeates and moves the EP fluidly between songs. The Rhythmically based EP is a start to finish joint with additional songs “The Falsetto” , “Quarantine” and “Tender” that move it along at a steady groove pace and the lone slower joint “Better Wetter”, That display Miller’s songwriting and Smoother Mid Tenor in a comfortable lane. Never rushed nor out of pocket. Its a pleasant sound, never Uber Vulgar in delivery ( a current R&B vocalist style, go figure) . He delivers a sensuous and seductive project virtually free of profane oversexed lyrics , but still effective in landing his point. Gives you R. Kelly/ Trey Songs Vibes.. He is definitely a member of the New R&B Soldier club with the likes of Arin Ray and Lucky Daye. I digs or should I say FUX with it!!
Jeff Dean – Good Morning ft. Anesha Birchett
R&B in Detroit is more than special to me. So when I get new music I’m like kid in a Candy Store. JEFF DEAN, dropped this Slow Grinder with an assist from ANESHA BIRCHETT (One Half of Sister Singing and Songwriting Duo, A*PLUS) Gets the mood right on all levels. . Always look forward to Jeff’s projects. Always quality..
Akinyele The Blk.Night – Better feat. Martel & Leon Taylor (Single)
R&B Warrior Producer/ Singer & Songwriter AKINYELE THE BLK. NIGHT, returns to form with a new project to further his dedication to the proliferation of the survival of R&B Music. From his newest collection “More Then R&B” a gift to music lovers who have a desire for some Real R&B instead of the steady flow of Hip Hop influenced swagness in place of real Soul, comes the single “Better” featuring the vocals of Detroit artists Martel and Leon Taylor. Its a jewel of Urban AC with risque lyrics delivered in seduction rather than over the top rogue style.. Ladies will love the groove which is layered in melody and lush instrumentation.. One to ride too or just chill with ..
Cullen Emadrey – Chimera (Single)
Young Detroit based vocalist/ songwriter CULLEN EMADREY is beginning to hit his stride early in his career. Following up from his last project, 2018s “UNFOLD” with the single “Into Oblivion” and more. He returns to start off 2020 with the single “Chimera”.. The growth is apparent as is the creative liberties he takes with the cut. He is on the cusp of something great if this single is any indication of the trajectory this young man is aiming for.. He has shades of Miguel, Lucky Daye and even Alt Soul Hero Frank Ocean.. For those who love the musings of Maxwell.. CULLEN EMADREY has something we have been yearning for from young artists..
Tab Rasul – Sometimes I.. (Full Album)
This is one I have been waiting for . Not only is Tab Rasul a dedicated and tenured vocalist, known for her reliable vocals around Detroit. But she is a supporter of ALL Detroit artists and music. So When I can return the Love .. I’MO DO IT!! Her project titled “Sometimes I..” is a lesson in Funk, Soul and R&B young artists can use as a Blueprint to how its done. She is a Soulstress of the first order. A student and disciple of Chaka, Patti and Jill Scott.. Starting with “Test My Love” & “Headed to The Top”, she delivers the setup for the full Punches that is the Hitting “N.Y.G.” and “The Argument” two definite Burners that get you up and have the slump and air that R&B of the 80’s and 90’s used to have. Tab is a Vocalists Vocalist, who has full control of a well trained instrument in her confident vocal. Which she uses to adept effect on songs like “Rock All Night and the album closer “Thank You” , when you think she is a one trick Power Diva.. She can soften or harden her aim like the pro she is.. “Sometimes I..” is a mature R&B lovers album. One that I myself lets play like we used to. Not over stuffed nor under packed. Lets just say I dig this one, I Think You Will too..
JUNii – outOfHere
“out of here” by Rapper/ Vocalist/ songwriter and Producer JUNii, is a throwback /progressive and layered contribution to the new frontier of Hip Hop. Taking it back to the Souliquarian/ Native Tongues Days while being a full disciple and devotee of the DreamVille and TDE Era of Rap . Junii is an anomaly, a unicorn in the field, who is a capable Rapper, Realistic singer and capable songwriter & producer who evolves the sound to mature yet still youthful level. Interjecting her rap delivery from Bone Thugs rhythm cadences in style, to land on a dime with a sharp yet raw Soprano that pierces at points and straddles at others..Very Well arranged and mix..
Etto Valli – Moonflower
When I first heard this track right here, “Moonflower” from Detroit vocalist, ETTO VALLI, I Got the same goosebumps I got listening to other Detroit based vocalists songs, like Anita Baker’s – “Mystery”, KEM’s – “Love Calls” and Keith Washingtons – “Kissing You”.. Why those songs and artists are being referenced, are more than Geographic Similarities. These songs are the definitive way an R&B/Soul Song should sound like. From the arrangement to the Instrumentation. And especially the Vocalizations . which are sterling in arrangement and delivery.. Its a beautifully lush and soaring in all the right places. An Urban AC Lovers must on the playlist and Smooth R&B listeners Auto Jam.. ETTO is a very smooth and technically sound tenor. Not far from a Will Downing, who can shoot an octave and land perfectly on task at modulation. Or Phil Perry, whose falsetto was just as natural in execution. He rides his arrangement skillfully. This song is a joy to listen too.