Whenever I mention Joe Armon-Jones to someone, I keep reiterating that he’s one of the best keyboardists I’ve ever seen live, and I think I’ll be standing by that statement for quite a while still. Not only this, but as a producer and multi-instrumentalist, his music is dense and intricate, combining incredible keys, lavish synths and intense drumming. Fatima, on the other hand, has a unique vocal tone that I’ve come to truly love over the years. With incredible production to complement this, her music is always something I look forward to. Both artists have come together for a short but punchy 3-track EP titled Tinted Shades, and it’s as beautiful, emotive and soulful as I expected.
The project kicks off with “#1”, a dynamic, rhythmic record, with incredible drumming and synth leads that provide a platform for Fatima to grace the mic with a soothing and soulful vocal performance. There is so much depth and texture to the music, as each bit of instrumentation gives the track a wealth of soul and beauty. Joe’s keyboard solo in the second part of the song is special, as it quietens down, paving the way for “Tinted Shades”. The heavy basslines accompanying the beat are incredible, and Fatima’s deep and emphatic vocal performance here is another special moment that captures the allure and aura of her artistry perfectly. It’s a groove-centric track that is vibrant and really colourful. The ethereal “Love Life Hope” is incredible as well, as the groove and Fatima’s imperial vocal performance is truly angelic.
Despite it being only 3-tracks in length, Joe Armon-Jones and Fatima have already created one of my favourite projects of the year so far. It’s the energy, the groove-centric compositions and the textures of these tracks that make it such an enjoyable listening experience. Tinted Shades represents the creative genius of two artists at the peak of their powers and making timeless music. Go support Joe Armon-Jones and Fatima’s Tinted Shades EP below via Bandcamp. Released via Aquarii Records.