Teleported from her SomeOthaShip home base to Flying Lotus' Brainfeeder, Georgia Anne Muldrow follows up the 2014-2015 releases Oligarchy Sucks and A Thoughtiverse Unmarred with her most varied and generous LP yet. Unlike her pair of full-lengths from three years prior, Overload is neither a Chris Keys-produced rap set nor a personal beat tape. Rather, it offers modern, left-of-center R&B with production assistance courtesy of a crew that includes Mike & Keys (Money Mike and J-Keys), Moods, and Lustbass, with Flying Lotus, Aloe Blacc, and Dudley Perkins credited as co-executive producers. The devotion and gratitude Muldrow feels for partner Perkins informs several tracks, such as "Overload" itself, which is among her sweetest and most direct love songs, and "Canadian Hillbilly," a strange title for a blissed-out quiet storm soundtrack to a slow-motion meteor shower if there ever were one. Perkins himself is also heard on two other touching songs filled with solace and affection: "These Are the Things I Really Like About You," a frolicsome number with a touch of New Orleans jazz, and a knockout cover of the Gap Band's "You Can (Always) Count on Me," enriched with a powerful vocal from Muldrow family member Shana Jenson and a plump bassline. The nurturing warmth in the album's stream of openhearted sentiments can be translated as a reaction to intensified oppression of Muldrow's people. "We gonna make it through" here is no trite sentiment; she's singing about survival. The conditions explicitly charge "Blam," a call for self-defense and familial protection. Muldrow declares "'Fore I be a slave, I'll be buried in my grave" over a knocking beat that adds ancient African percussion and 20th century G-funk synthesizer, and its pro-armament hook, containing one of her catchiest melodies, is committed to memory with the immediacy of a Black Panther chant. That perspective, extreme as it might seem for anyone who doesn't have to worry about being mistaken for a burglar in their own home, is only illuminated by the love and appreciation that permeate the surrounding songs. Overload attests that Muldrow has much to preserve.
AllMusic Review by Andy Kellman