Globetrotting DJ and producer Jayda G has emerged as a major figure in the underground house scene since she began playing international gigs and releasing tracks during the mid-2010s. Known for her boundless charisma and love of vintage disco and funk, Jayda released several dreamy, unpretentious house 12"s on labels like Freakout Cult (which she co-ran with DJ Fett Burger) and 1080p before signing with Ninja Tune for the release of her first album. Significant Changes is a culmination of her life passions as well as everything that's made her music stand out thus far. While certainly a club record, the album moves through a wide range of moods and emotions. "Renewal (Hyla Mix)" features shuffling breakbeats and lightly babbling synths, as Jayda laments "sometimes I feel so lonely" from the darkest corner of the room, her voice shrouded by echo. Much more extroverted and commanding is "Stanley's Get Down (No Parking on the DF)," a reminder that the dancefloor is no place for checking social media on one's phone. Jayda's close friend and frequent vocal collaborator Alexa Dash joins the party on the post-disco jam "Leave Room 2 Breathe" and the euphoric "Sunshine in the Valley," which could be a lost Ibiza anthem from 1992. At the center of it all, Jayda dedicates two tracks to her other major preoccupation besides music, the natural world. In 2018, Jayda earned her Master's degree in Resource and Environmental Management, focusing on environmental toxicology, and "significant changes" happened to be the most frequently used phrase in her final thesis. "Orca's Reprise" incorporates the sounds of killer whales, and its downcast mood reflects the disheartening facts Jayda found during her research about the destruction of ecosystems. "Missy Knows What's Up" scatters samples of biologist Misty MacDuffee ("Why are these whales threatened and what are we going to do about it?") throughout a simple but sturdy house beat, and her voice seems to rise up and float away as if appearing via bubbles. Significant Changes is a superb album which balances a concern for the planet with a shameless urge to have fun, all representing a sincere, unconquerable love of life.
AllMusic Review by Paul Simpson