Reviews

Liv.e
Girl In The Half Pearl

(In Real Life)

7/10

Springboarding from a duo of buzzy EP projects, singer-songwriter Liv.e (pronounced ‘Liv’), used her 2020 debut album Couldn’t Wait To Tell You to demonstrate an immediate, affable sense of artistry. That record’s musicianship and creativity have a certain magic, in no small part thanks to the universality of Liv.e’s songwriting themes. Raised in Dallas and now residing in Los Angeles, her work is full of Southern syncopation, but thanks to her holistic, instinctive soundscapes that encompass a wide palette of jazz, soul and experimentalism, there is an inescapable familiarity for listeners from further afield too. 

Girl In The Half Pearl continues this effortlessness. Tracks like ‘Ghost’ and ‘Gardetto’ deploy the sort of breakbeats to which UK garage fans will be accustomed, while their expressive lo-fi soul singing and choppy samples create aethers akin to Burial’s genre-defining classic Untrue. ‘Find Out’ and ‘Clowns’, meanwhile, balance the smart beats of Tyler, The Creator and Flying Lotus with the compassionate yet radical lyrical approach of artists like Solange and Lauryn Hill.

Considering 2022 saw Beyoncé thrust the prospect of soul, electronic and experimentalism into one of the biggest releases of the year with RENAISSANCE, Girl In The Half Pearl could scarcely be any more well-timed.

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