Love, Identity, and Consciousness take the front seat to Mélat’s latest album Move Me II: The Present. The local Austin sensation has blessed us with another beautiful musical composition that vocalizes her influence as a member of this community, and solidifies her brilliance as an artist.
Since the early 2000’s, the R&B genre has become a shadow to the mainstream music scene. The more complicated and emotional soul of Blues was phased out by the simple and agreeable sound of Pop, until every major “mix” radio station was full of flavorless hooks.
Move Me II: The Present is a revival of all that was right in the world when Alicia Keys, Mariah Carey, India.Arie, and Usher were the heart of the mainstream music scene. This fits thematically due to the fact the album’s title is a command to integrate oneself into the now.
The Album Up Close
The album begins with ethereal vocals pulling you into a soulful haze, like the Greeks imagined Sirens pulled sailors into water. From then on you’re drowning in the safety and sweetness of Mélat’s voice, as she sings about the treacherous journey that life is to a lover far away:
“I’ve got some bad news/ things haven’t been the same back on Earth baby/ except my love for you” – (“Co-Pilot” / Move Me II: The Present).
In its essence, the album feels as though it could have possibly been created around Mélat’s struggle to reconcile herself in relation to an incessant and often overwhelming present. She goes about this by delving into the different roles and identity’s she possesses. Each song is about her existence as a black woman, a lover, a daughter, a believer, and finally, as an artist.
“Some people call me crazy/Some people call me mad/Cuz I’m still singing/about love y’all/A love we wish we had/And when world is crumbling/I still sing all day/Cuz love is my religion/So when I worry I pray”- ( “Worries (Revelation 8:3)” / Move Me II: The Present).
This creates a brilliant and introspective album that relays a deeper understanding of what it means to be a human.There is nothing hollow or innocuous about this album. Interwoven between the hypnotic beats, melodramatic keys, and addictive background vocals are genuine lyrics reflective of the environment and the artist that formed them.
After listening through the album and gathering thoughts on my overall perspective of the project, it is easy to say that this is one of my favorite projects so far in 2018. Having just dropped a week before Valentine’s Day, this is the perfect piece of work to listen to by yourself, or you can vibe to it from start to finish along with your significant other. Her collaborative work with Jansport J on the album really gave off such a relaxing sensation. The ten track project is the perfect choice if you’re looking for something fresh, harmonizing, and full of emotion. Songs on the album like “4AM, Call Me I’m Up’” and “Not A Lover” really bring back that classic early 2000’s R&B feel, which is just another thing to add to the list of why the album is a success. One thing to look out for throughout listening to the album is how Mélat variated with different beats and paces of the songs. The album offers the slow, soulful R&B and every other song or so transitions into a catchy, more pacy song worth jamming to. Be sure to look out for any upcoming shows featuring Mélat for a chance to experience how well put together some of the songs from the album are live.”
Photo By: Moyo Oyelola