Last month LA based Funk group The Pendletons released their debut LP: 2 Steps Away. A delightful blend of tight grooves, thick bass and slick 70’s-style horn sections. The record as a whole draws heavily on its funk and disco influences, with a distrincly vintage compositional style, still taking advantage of the possibilities of modern production, making it well worth a listen for any fans of the genre.
A stand out introduction to the group is track ‘Life to Me’, a slow burner with lyrics on love and liberation. A sonorous bass groove oozes at the heart of this track, locking in tightly with punctuative drums to gaurantee some head bobbing. Buoyant analogue synth chords and Chic-esque guitar chops flesh out the rhythm section, adding a little shimmer to the affair, classic funk.
Atop this musical lazy river, understated vocals and a collection of sparkling, delay-soaked synths take turns exploring the groove, adding lyrical and sonic sweetness to this sticky track.
‘Priceless’ is the debut track from Liam Joshua Eede or LJ. The Northampton based singer lists influences including Craig David and Chris Brown, this comes through loud and clear on the hook of ‘Priceless’, where LJ delivers an intoxicated, droning vocal melody over a notably perky beat, that practically teleports the listener to somewhere dark, booze drenched and late.
LJ evokes the indescribable and undefinable feelings of love one can feel another, setting his infatuation against the banal materialism so often evoked on club tracks. Admittedly, the lyrics do not always hit home with power, ‘Priceless’ is not a love song for the ages, but the vocal melody LJ delivers adds well to the track’s laid back, danceable vibe, with lyrics perhaps remaining secondary.
‘Priceless’’ beat revolves around an impossibly catchy chord progression delivered on slippery marimba and spacey synths, working together to weave a psychedelic, tropical pallet of pure ear candy. Underneath this, bass, kicks and snares are woven tastefully, never obscuring LJ’s delivery and never failing to get the listener moving. LJ’s vocals come of a little overproduced at times, compressed heavily and occasionally chorus and flange, a rawer tone would be far more listenable.
Overall ‘Priceless’ is an impressive debut, easily holding its own against high rotation club tracks, demanding a listen, and a place on your pre-drinks playlist.