Threads of experimental pop, soul, and funk weave the main fabric of Zenizen’s “I Would (...but you want me down)”, the artist’s first new song since 2018. The singular alto of singer, songwriter, and producer Opal Hoyt is at the front of “I Would” with poetic verse that dismisses both the societal requests made of her, and the society from which those requests come. Uninhibited bass by Jonathan Maron (Erykah Badu, D’Angelo) grooves with subtle ferocity in the rhythmic interstices shaped by the matter of fact touch of drummer Vishal Nayak (Nick Hakim, Empress Of), laced with the rich, atmospheric warmth of Rhodes and synth played by Hoyt. Another dimension is added to the commanding groove of “I Would” with emcee Nappy Nina conducting the song’s climax with piercing, agile verse that replaces Maron’s bass just until the song’s coda, punctuating Zenizen’s return with impressive range and feel.
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