The ocean of creative and social differences between the world of the established music industry and that of the left-field, independent underground hasn’t been as vast and in-depth prior to 2018, and that’s saying something if you can recall the turmoil and lackluster derision between the punks and the hair metal crowd back in the 1980’s in the United States. Now when I listen to someone like Edenn, an R&B/indie soul-pop artist based out of France, I can’t help but notice all of the nuances and micro sized flashes of exceptional grace without feeling resentful towards the figures in this business that are seeking to keep him off the airwaves.
No, this isn’t a conspiracy theory. Anyone who knows anything about the business side of western entertainment knows that there’s a corporate interest to have their say, and if you fall outside the lines of subordination, they’re not going to push you. You’re on your own. This happened in my career, I’ve seen it happen in ten thousand others just as well. Edenn is an artist who is committed more to his work than he is to the A&R man’s master plan for world domination, and you can tell as much when you listen to his track “Thinking” which is out now and kicking up quite a storm on Spotify. It’s a non-genre piece that works itself out like a teaser to a larger full-length album that’s possibly on its way to making delivery in the near future, but it’s also strong enough to be a one-off for this burgeoning young performer who already has a journalism career that’s going places just as fast. In a minor key descent that feels like a tumbling from the heavens onto the cold hard pavement of a grungy city below, “Thinking” takes a little time to get the engine revved up when it first commences play, but around the time that the first stanza of verses wraps up, it becomes pretty obvious that we’re climbing back up into the clouds and abandoning any notion of anti-realism in both the musical and lyrical approaches employed on this song.
Production wise I still have a few desires that aren’t satisfied completely in “Thinking,” chief among them the overabundance of echoing reverb on this track that makes it difficult for me to get into the opulence of Edenn’s amazing, evocative singing. It’s a shame, because I think that this man easily could possess one of the most melodic and unblemished set of vocal cords that I’ve heard since first listening to Usher in the late 1990’s. He’s just so… good. This man knows how to harmonize with himself to the point where a backing track almost seems a bit redundant in itself. I want to hear all of the little gradations and degrees within his range of ability, because “Thinking” shows me that he’s got the moves to do this for a long time to come. In his next track, I have a good feeling that we’ll see for sure just how big of a deal Edenn is really going to be, and if not, it would be rather sad for the future of R&B as we know it.
Thomas Patton III