Born in Maastricht and raised in Amsterdam, multi-talented artist Jarreau Vandal has been surrounded by jazz and R&B since a young age. This being my first real introduction to him, I was curious find out what his new record Anthology would sound like. And I was much more than pleasantly surprised.
The 13-track project features colourful production, with slick synth leads, guitar-driven grooves, electronic effects and exciting features that bring character and fun to this record. It sounds like it would be a perfect soundtrack to the summer, shame we’re a bit late into the year though, haha. In all seriousness though, there is diversity in sound throughout that will keep you engaged throughout the whole album. The smooth R&B sound of “Moonlight” features a gorgeous leading vocal performance from Hollie Carmen as well as a great additional vocal performance from Jay-Way. With subtle but poignant saxophone leads, it stands as a clear highlight of the project for me. Tracks like “What You Saying?” are bring a dynamic, infectious energy that is helped through a great feature from TĀLĀ. There are dreamier songs like “Trying Babe,” which is smooth throughout but grows sonically with a saxophone lead and gorgeous vocals in addition to it. I can talk so much more and give specific examples of incredible moments found on this album, but because Anthology is saturated with incredible music, it will take me ages to go through everything.
So, in conclusion, this is one of the better R&B, neo-soul, electronic albums I have come across this year. It mixes so many genres and experiments with textures and sounds incredibly well and it is a real testament to Jarreau Vandal as a composer. Great release indeed! You can listen to Anthology below via Soundcloud. Make sure you support!