Review - Jessie Ware - Devotion
Jessie Ware has been a big thing in the UK for over a year now, but I resisted writing about her. Why? Because I already write about a TON of singer-songwriters from England, and I can’t have them taking over my entire blog, as wonderful as they are. That, and I just never got around to it. That’s my bad.
I was redeemed of my mistake by Jessie releasing her album in the US almost a year after it came out in the UK (though, their chart positions weren’t the same – in the UK it made it to #5, but stateside it only managed to break the top 80). With a remix featuring A$AP Rocky and some radio promotion, this album might actually just happen…
But, what does it sound like? Well, almost like nothing you’ve ever heard, although you could almost swear it’s kind of like that girl’s song all those years ago. Or is it? Jessie’s album sounds decades more mature than you’d expect from a 27 year old – especially one who has only put out one album. Vocally, I hear a woman in her forties singing at a nice club five nights a week. She’s got a good voice and personality, but she never quite made it big.
Musically things couldn’t be more different. Part pop, part R&B, all soul; Ware pulls in odd bits of everything to make simplistic, transparent and thrilling beats. Sometimes this sounds like Miguel’s “Adorn”, while at other times she utilizes that early 90’s keyboard that sounds so dated but complements her so well (which is an accomplishment in itself). Jessie is part of the new group of melancholic pop – AlunaGeorge, HAIM, Charli XCX – but we’re not talking Adele. This is something less mainstream but equally as exciting.
Listen to: everything. No, but really. They all blend a tiny bit…until something jumps out and surprises you.