Hear The Track HereAccording to MJK I reviewed one of his tracks in the past and using my super-duper information scooper (Ed: he means the piles of paper that always obscure his desk) I did indeed. Almost exactly a year ago I reviewed With Me (January 2006) and absolutely loved it. His deep, rich vocal style even managed to overcome my inbuilt revulsion for the softer side of R&B, and that's quite an achievement on its own. It also helped to power up a fairly cloying track into something that would appeal right across the board and - accordingly - I gave it a highly recommended rating. Strange then, innit, that it's been a year between that track and Never Loved Me. Well, actually, the track is called *New* Never Loved Me but I figger you - like me - never heard the original so new is neu??? (Ed: wtf?)
OK, I'm going to set you a task....
Don't listen to the track for a minute while I yap about it. While I am doing that, you click on the link to his site above and look at the picture of him on the right side of the screen. When I first encountered MJK I reckoned that the main selling point was that incredible voice, followed by incredibly professional arrangment and top quality sound control. In short, the real thing. So, look at that guy and NOW start playing the track. Amazing isn't it? That this incredible work of art (and I mean that as a most sincere compliment) can come from such a young (c'mon the guy looks like he's 12!!) and cleancut all-American boy. However, nothing diminishes the sense that here is an artist who shines out from the crowd, and consequently is well worth investigating by pretty much everybody - because his gentle, soulful style almost certainly will appeal to most.
I could write reams and reams about each and every element that make up this wonderfully captured blissout but - as always - the real star is yet again the vocal. In this case, as well as a faultless and emotive performance from the main vocal, the background vocals take immediate second billing for the sound and texture they added at the right points. The real killer punch though occurs around 2:10 with a breakdown that has an almost Indian (eastern, not western) feel, followed by some ear massaging acappela before wandering into an outro that vanishes into the sunset. Seriously folks, this is - to use a much maligned phrase - fekking brilliant in every way. Still not convinced? Well normally I would shoot most urban weepies (slow, full of angst) which - to me anyway - is the complete opposite of the meaning of soul, and need putting out of their misery. Well, there is more soul in this young Miami based singer than in most of the genre it shelters under. He's also one of the most hard-working too because, believe me, making something as good as this takes sooooo much time, blood and trouble - a sign of a musician who was born to this.
MUST HAVE (how could it not be?).