Friday, May 14, 2010

Yolandé Strauss - Samson

Hear The Track Here

If you think this artists name is familiar then you would be right. I haven't, as yet, reviewed her in her own right though, obviously this track is going to put that right. She is a South African singer/songwriter who has made a mark with this reviewer. So, we have encountered Yolande a couple of times in the past teamed up with Alchemystic whose two ballads - Sweet Sorrow (January 2010) and Never Thought (March 2010) - absolutely knocked me out of my socks. What makes this fact all the more amazing is that - as I mentioned - these are ballads and I've never been a fan of weepy stuff. I am, however, a big fan of Yolande's vocal abilities, and jumped at the chance to see what she does on her own...although it has to be said that this is also a collaboration, this time with Steffen Offermann who I know nothing whatsoever about.

Not much to the song, piano and strings, with the piano pretty much carrying the whole thing on its back and - of course - it's another ballad. It's never been an area I've ever felt comfortable in and it takes a rare talent to lure me into such treacle-y terrain, and thankfully Yolande Strauss does have the kind of voice that fits material like this as was evidenced by the tracks she did with Alchemystic. Samson is a much more stripped down version of what was on offer with her previous tracks, but - to my mind - is the better for it. After all, this is a love song to her husband and the emotion is right there, as is the lyrical content.

Of course it's all very sphincter tightening if you happen to cringe at such outward signs of (gulp) lurve, and I spent many an hour under the table while this was playing BUT that is just me and I'm sure if you like good (and I really mean GOOD) ballads, then this will definitely float your boats. On the two tracks with Alchemystic I mentioned that she reminded me somewhat of Karen Carpenter and I don't get that sense on Samson. In fact, I think I begin to see past that initial impression, and that's a good thing because although its a handy reference, it's not really fair. She claims that she is a big fan of the incomparable Nina Simone and. just for the craic, I would like to hear her do some material in that jazzy style Nina Simone is justly famed for.

Excellent, simple but deep, love song. Highly Recommended.

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