‘A mystery wrapped in an enigma, bound in a monkey-puzzle’, was how one journalist recently described him. ‘An audio androgyny’, ‘a prodigy’, ‘a musician unregulated by stylistic borders’ – even ‘a genre-philanderer’. However he’s dubbed, one thing’s a given, he defies any pigeonhole. Welcome to the consciously, delightfully leftocentric, kaleidoscopic world of J-Soul.
As a musician, J-Soul’s intriguing sound waves have been emanating out of his native Russia with ever-greater resonance throughout the last half-decade. Over that time he’s cast an eclectic, electric musical spell through a string of releases and remixes on forward thinking labels like Re-Zone, Twisted Frequency, Curvve Records, Anjunadeep and a half dozen more besides. It is through Holland’s Black Hole Recordings though that he’s elected to make the jump to sophomore artist album. In a reversal of convention, highly characteristic of the artist, on ‘Glace’ J-Soul’s pulled off the mask to present Andy Jaar - the man behind these routinely breath-stealing stylistic leaps. The core to his music still echoes through his pen name though. This is music made of many elements, served many different ways, but always sourced from the Soul.
‘Glace’ the album starts fittingly enough with ‘Glace’ the track. A chasm-deep progressive journey, it’s alive with funkified bass, melancholically evocative analogue synthery, all wrapped in nouveau disco chic.