Blue-in-Green:RADIO

Wednesday, 22 July 2020

'Speak Your Truth' by Tensei


'Speak Your Truth' is the brand new EP from the revered production duo, Tensei, who release this excellent project through the UK's Def Pressé label.

Hailing from Chicago, Illinois, and comprised of producers Chris Kramer and Midas Wells, the prospect of new music from Tensei has become a source of great excitement.  Much is made of Kramer and Wells's unique ability to create music that interweaves a multitude of styles and genres into a cohesive and distinctly Tensei-esque composition: part spiritual jazz, part hip-hop, part nu-soul...  Tensei really have stumbled onto the magic formula and their bold and inspirational approach to genre-defying music-making has resulted in some unparalleled releases for which their efforts have become truly renown.

The success of their 'Constellate' project last year, courtesy of Germany's Tokyo Dawn Records, seems to have kick started an incredibly exciting wave of creativity that has resulted in some fantastic projects,.  Lingering on 'Constellate' for a moment, the seven track project exemplified Tensei's musical vision, pairing their skills masterfully with vocalists including Liv Warfield and Sam Trump along with tracks featuring their long-time and frequent collaborator, harpist Brandee Younger.  Younger's magical touch was really a match-made-in-heaven union with Tensei productions perhaps best represented by that project's single 'Liquid Tongues' featuring vocalist A. Billi Free.  Such was the success of that pairing that Tokyo Dawn was again able to play host to Tensei through 'I Luma', the fantastic collaborative project showcasing A. Billi Free simply soaring over exceptional sonic soundscapes painted by Kramer and Wells.  And still not content to leave it there, the collaboration with Georgia Anne Muldrow, 'Walk It Out' and subsequent remix package, capped off a flawless year.

And this year looks set to bring Tensei equal levels of praise and plaudits as they partner with the eclectic and incredibly innovative label, Def Pressé.  Home to names including Pan Amsterdam, Madison Washington, Toni Sauna and Corey King, Tensei have found wonderful partners in Def Pressé when it comes to facilitating their musical vision with an equally fearless one of their own.

... which brings us to 'Speak Your Truth'.

The brand new five track EP from Tensei sees them deliver another fantastic offering, once again running the gamut of musical styles and aided by another round of awesome collaborators.  Another name synonymous with Tensei's music is rapper ADaD, who features on the EP's soulful lead single, 'Last Dance' with Crl Crrll.  Other names including J Nolan and Ozay Moore excel on their contributions for 'Candy Lady' and 'Taste Like', respectively.  Emily Steinwall marks a particularly exciting inclusion for 'Speak Your Truth' as her indelible talents are wonderfully showcased over two tracks for the project, 'Daydream' and 'Bath Salts', boasting Steinwall's brilliance as a vocalist and flautist.  'Bath Salts' in particular at 6 minutes long could lay claim to being the quintessential Tensei track with its boundlessly infectious musical narrative that traverses a variety of musical realms.

As mentioned earlier, new music from Tensei - and Def Pressé - comes with great excitement.  For the uninitiated, 'Speak Your Truth' serves as a great introduction to both camps and the perfect springboard to explore both catalogues further.

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