When you think of passion, you think of a storm that is suppressed by emotion. In retrospect, pure R&B/Soul induces that in its listeners – that calm before the storm, that suppressed erotic balance of salty and sweet that needs to escape but remains to play. It places the pause button on life and allows you to just chill and see things differently. Such Soul/R&B hits from the likes of Marvin Gaye, Seal, Johnny Gill, PJ Morton, and even Maxwell gave us memories to cherish.
A recent single that came across my ears evokes that same appeal and passion – it is called “Piece of Me” by LJ Howard – a Soul/R&B singer/songwriter from Essex UK.
The storyline is about how differences in life may be obvious between two people, but how the playing field is leveled by a common ground; yet when indifferences creep in, be it infidelity, lies, secrets, or just emotional exhaustion, that may be the major factor in causing a break-up. This complex storyline is balanced with smooth instrumentation and a vocal that will set up the dance floor.
Playing much like a ballad, but giving off vibes of a smooth EDM track with its heavy bass bottom, “Piece of Me” starts off like a quiet alarm clock setting the tempo of a song that shapes layers and layears of mystery. Starting with scaled back vocal adlibs, then building up to mellow percussions bouncing off ecclectic synths and a crisp piano, onto the inclusion of some FX minimally embracing the lead, and alluring electric guitars that play around with each other, this track has all of the musical ingredients to fit side by side with the artists I mentioend at the opening of this review.
In additon, LJ Howard’s vocals are up front and personal from the intro to the outro. You hear his second tenor/baritone prowess scale and whip from note to note and transform from lead, to background, to adlibs, to highlights, and all with precision. His voice is soothing and powerful; you want to listen to it all day. Its vocal rhythm and style is very much Soul, but LJ Howard is skilled enough to shift his voice to fit the musical tapestry of R&B, Funk, and Rock as well as match the overall atmosphere of any written cut.
In other words, LJ Howard's music fits any individual's taste like a tailored suit!
So, why not give this track a try and see how it fits into your life! It’s SMOKIN! Better yet, watch the video below and download your copy today from Spotify. You'll thank me later!