It’s hard to believe it’s been 6 years since we first heard Sampha's unique beautifully melancholic vocals on SBTRKT's self-titled debut. The 27 year olds vocals and production have been featured on tracks for Drake, Solange, and Frank Ocean groundbreaking albums of 2016. It feels like 2017 was the perfect time for Sampha to release a long awaited album of his own.
‘Process’ comes 3 years after his EP Dual and the loss of his mother back in 2015. The album name alone gives you an understanding of how the album may map out. The 10 track album feels like a form of self release with songs nodding to childhood experiences (Like The Piano) and reflecting on his past 2 years. Each song has such variety in use of instruments but fits together perfectly. There is a strong feeling that this album is a form of self-release and a way to vocalizing his personal growth.
Though there are a number of power ballad’s there is a diverse sound in each track. There is variation of stripped back tracks (Take Me Inside) and vibrant complex songs with layers of punchy electro bites (Timmy’s Prayer, Blood on me).
I hold this album up with the likes of ‘A Seat at my Table’ and ’25’. It is a finely tuned, personal/reflective and lyrically poetic piece of art by an accessible, heartfelt singer who keeps to the traditional songwriting yet pushed the boundaries out without being too experimental.
We will be keeping our eye out for this album when it comes to Mercury Awards as it truly deserves one.