A track by track review of the new album ‘Celebration’ by singer/songwriter Love Ssega. I saw him play live in 2017 (see review below), it was a stripped back performance with just jazzy guitar accompaniment but immediately connecting strongly with the audience.
1. Celebration (No Bad News). A polyrhythmic and funky groove with a dissonant edgy backing and a wide-ranging vocal performance. A bold, unrelenting introduction to the collection.
2. Bring the Water. Raising the tempo for this sharply constructed song with the voice jousting and weaving against a neat jumpy bass pattern and intricate percussion.
3. Find Another Way. Mellow marimba and an insistent drum figure provides a smooth platform for a emotive lyric, always leading back into the title line chorus. A great pop song and definitely one of the many highlights on this LP.
4. Rich Forever. Not the most immediate track on the album but definitely a grower, instruments and extra voices drift in out and through the mix underneath the vivid and strong central vocal performance.
5. Solutions. As the staccato electronica backing oscillates between pairs of chords the narrator ‘…wants solutions…’ but the track builds up and it seems that this of course is left unresolved…
6. Automation. More electronic keyboard pulses and rhythms with the biggest and catchiest hookline on the LP, as the lyric reflects on dehumanisation and the future, ‘…tell your people you love them, not technology….’. I think an early version of this was in the set when I saw him back in 2017, it is a powerful song and sentiment and probably my favourite track on the album.
7. Save Me. Another track where the adept playing and production enhance and fully realise the musical and lyrical ideas. Driven by bass and drums and an excellent vocal the soulful groove is a satisfying end to album.