Thursday, December 18, 2014

K Raydio & O.D. - One Drop review

K Raydio and O.D. One Drop

Minneapolis new school soul vocalist K. Raydio and producer/crate digger O. D. collaborate on One Drop, a follow-up to K Raydio's excellent left-field debut Lucid Dreaming Skylines (a collaboration with producer Psymun [TheStand4rd/Spooky Black]). Initially, K. Raydio had a strong reference to Neo-Soul giants Erykah Badu and Jill Scott. Not a bad way to start, but on One Drop, K. Raydio finds her own lane. She is a thoughtful soul stylist who pays respect to the masters without mimicking their sound.

One Drop finds K . Raydio and O.D. exploring various avenues of modern soul. Lyrically K. Raydio is much more complicated than Lucid Dreaming Skylines, with personal narratives of her background and life weaved throughout. Addressing those called “others” on intro “Initial”, before opening with the cautionary tale on the stunning, heavy “One Drop”. This song is a gorgeous look into the life of a black girl growing up and dealing with racial complexities where society has its own views of those with “One Drop”. The heavier, southern funk of “Underdog” could be on par with legends Denise Lasalle or Chaka Khan. Taking on that J Dilla thump is “The Black Wall”, followed by another stunner with the mid-tempo, organic instrumental “Float (Another Round)”. They make a funky retro reference on the high energy tease of “First Name”. Slowing down with the elegant “goodmorninglove” , a Sunday morning soul serenade. “Miss Turner” scores with its bad mama attitude alone. On the super groovy Neo-Soul jewel “Gossip”, K. Raydio warns “It's that elementary game and I swear I stopped playing years ago, see what others think of me, I didn't care to know” over a feel good thump, thump rattle that spins into a dizzy array. With a left turn mid-song, O.D. makes like Madlib as he breaks it down and keeps your head nodding with a stutter-step, broken beat. Another strong moment is “Endure”, before closing with instrumental “Rearview”.

Producer/artist/engineer Medium Zach (Big Quarters/Mankwe/Greg Grease) allows each song to breathe and add its own colors. The production itself is full of sonic intricacies that have a richness and exploratory quality. K. Raydio songwriting has matured and become stronger and more confident. The soulful, heavy funk of O. D. shows that Minneapolis has a talented and growing diverse producers' field.

K Raydio & O.D. -One Drop-download

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