R&B has had a steady resurgence across the Nordics as more people dive into the archives and discover living icons like Maxwell, Lauryn Hill and Mary J Blige still touring their cities.
Norwegian singer Louam grew up in the vibrant era of 90’s R&B, and the fruits of its influence flow from her debut album ‘Wreckless love‘.
Fittingly released on Valentine’s day the album does indeed relate to relationships or as Louam succinctly puts it ‘hopelessness, happiness and broken hearts.’
As I listen to the 10 tracks ‘authenticity’ is the word is the word that comes to mind, and it’s a crucial one. Produced by a host of talents; Boxxes, Angus ‘Lowgan’ Trujillo, Thomas ‘JNS’ Jones and Moonshine, the collection of songs could easily sit beside the US studio arrangements that defined 90’s R&B. With such a solid base Louam can rewind and deliver her playful and uplifting lyrics.
Classic R&B vinyls shouldn’t be in the ‘Sale section’ yet as Louam brings a fresh reminder of R&B’s broad appeal. Catchy for radio play – Big Loop, thoughtful for the music lover – One Me and infectious for the dancefloor – Mesmerize Me. The punching bass and superb production of Mesmerize Me gets me every time.
Louam presents an upbeat ode to her musical mentor and good times past on the track – Mary J Blige. While – Like 90’s R&B, leaves you in no doubt to which musical period this album resides.
This isn’t an album of pure exemplary imitation.
It’s a genuine homage and journey through her life and love stories.
The track No One ends the album on a high. The production on this A-class single of pleading love is, as always, outstanding.
The only disappointment was not finding her previously released singles; Rescue Me, All Cool and No Time in the tracklist. All three lead us to the Norwegian songstress and are well worthy of inclusion.
Louam invites us to ‘Share My World’, as Mary J would say, and I for one am more than happy to.
Norwegian R&B now has Louam at the forefront of its revival