Souleye – Snow Angel
Hip hop force and lyricist Souleye’s latest single “Snow Angel” will surely garner much attention thanks to its inclusion of the rapper’s wife Alanis Morissette on supporting vocals. Her turn in this new release is surely quite memorable, but it isn’t the whole story behind this track. “Snow Angel” is featured on his impending new full length album Wild Man and stands as one of the most introspective efforts from this powerful recording and performing artist. Souleye is well served by the production efforts of Crush Effect, a renowned figure in the genre, who frames Souleye’s melodic and vocal gifts in the best possible musical light. The combined efforts of the talent involved on this release illustrate the promise and anticipation that deserves to surround his new album. Based on this single and its predecessor, Wild Man is shaping up to be a new peak in a long career filled with extraordinary musical accomplishments.
The first evidence of the song’s greatness comes in the form of how well the production merges Souleye’s well honed compositional style with the otherworldly beauty of Morissette’s voice. Morissette’s vocal contributions to the track add much, but they are never geared towards achieving the same overall effect as Souleye’s own vocal, but rather are aimed to underline the inherent quality of the song as a whole. Souleye’s own vocal bears all of the distinctive qualities that has made him one of the genre’s greats while still occupying his own niche in the style. He uses his voice like a percussive instrument capable of containing remarkable emotive qualities in a genre not always known for sensitivity of delivery. There’s a strong melodic undercurrent likewise powering his delivery and it further enriches an already memorable outing for this great rapper. The true achievement of it all, however, is how neatly the vocals dovetail into the musical arrangement to give the song a stunningly cinematic, yet intensely physical, quality.
Much of that begins with the percussion. It is an evolving element, responding to shifts in the electronic loops and synth lines, yet it provides the performance with a wholly consistent rhythmic base that any singer or rapper would be happy to work with. The top line melodic instruments providing the electronic surface have a vivid sheen, but never sound overly thought out or sterile. Instead, there’s an oddly warm quality coming from them considering the song title. It’s clear much effort and thought went into constructing this musical narrative and it never meanders or lapses into repetition. The teaming of Souleye with his spouse Morissette gives this song a special distinction, of that there can be no doubt, but even shorn of her contributions, this track would stand as a mighty achievement in a career that has carried Souleye from obscurity to the forefront of his musical genre. This song also has a broad-based appeal that cuts across genre lines and anyone with the openness to give this track a chance will find it difficult to not be affected by its incandescent beauty.
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