Reviews

Album Review: D∆WN Will Give You “Redemption”

Imagine entering a mystical jungle. In that jungle are tall colorful trees with leaves strobed with lights instead of veins. Bongos begin to play and become synthesized with drums. Suddenly, this magical piece nature transforms into a virtual club, where music is the only real fruit you can eat. Does that sound like a crazy dream? It is, and it is also the new album by Dawn Richard called Redemption. 
D∆WN has released her inner “Kween”  in Redemption, and has gone from a flourishing artist to a pure teacher of art. Redemption is 100% D∆WN’s reflection upon her beauty and confidence as a woman and musician. Now on her third album, the artist is known lacing for old school pop ballads with a sense of futurism. Her newest album is more than just “electro-pop” ; it is a nosedive into a pool of synthetic keys with human sentiments being its foundation. The mix is revealing, especially to those that fear electronica is too emotionally numbing as a genre. D∆WN assures their is a balance between synthetic and spiritual by making her heart the center of each beat. Moreover, her soulful voice would never allow the digitized and anagogic sonics to overpower the rawness of her empowering messages. 

From “Lazarus” to “The Louvre”, D∆WN has no qualms using her vocal, brass, percussive, and stringed instruments to lead into computerized ones, resulting in a magnificent outlook on the bits of humanity that make us earthbound and the others that make us Heaven-bound. “The Louvre” is my favorite song in Redemption, and it is a delicate yet prime example of D∆WN’s capacity to make you feel like you are being lifted from quicksand, which is ultimately is what redemption feels like. Throughout the album, D∆WN is spontaneous and fluid. In songs like “Voyeur”, “Black Crimes”, and “Voices”, she gives an ancient mysticism to electronica that makes its sporadic nature flow like a river. Yet, it is her voice that encapsulates her desire that listeners actually LISTEN to her lyrics. Absolutely, every track is a detailed look into personal, interpersonal, and overall communal relationships, and how they mold people’s ideas of inner and outer beauty. The notion is intriguing, when you think of it in terms of redemption. It, inadvertently, presents the idea that it is how we define beauty that ultimately affects how we define sin. 

Would you hurt what you think is ugly? Or would you heal it? Or is it you that needs to be healed for not seeing it as beautiful?  This may seem like an abstract notion, but D∆WN is one of the few artists that makes the abstract seem clear. While others, especially fans of psychedelia, enjoy the indefinable, colorful nature of spirituality, D∆WN has taken to personal task deciphering how the vastness of the universe can be boiled down to one’s singular, individual essence. The results are

tantalizing, thoughtful, and will make you feel like you have entered a musical sauna filled with such rhythmic heat that even your heart will sweat. Plainly, this album is “HOT”. Yet, again, its phenomena all leads to D∆WN’s voice. 
D∆WN is like a cross between Janelle Monáe and Katy Perry. She has Monáe’s “cool as a cucumber style” that even makes her most emotionally wrought vocals seem effortless. No matter what spiritual struggle, her voice is unfazed and sounds ahead of the times. Like Perry, D∆WN has an empowering range that when decides to belt or hit a high note, it goes from your ears to your soul to give you strength. For D∆WN, electro-pop ballads are like a stage for her to perform a vocal ballet. Her voice can elegantly go from a cooing arabesque to a powerful pirouette, and leave listeners confounded by her capacity to transform virtual beats into sophistical soul. For More Information on D∆WN and to buy Redemption on November 18 Click Here