Anjulie

Anjulie

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AllMusic Review by

Listen to any one track on Guyanese-Canadian singer/songwriter Anjulie's self-titled debut, and it appears easy to pigeonhole her, to call her the next artist "X." The only problem with that lazy categorization is that, on song after song, that "artist X" changes. Opening track and single "Boom" conjures up aughts genre-benders like Santigold; the song's a sultry masala of miscellaneous styles, throwing dark bossa nova, Morricone-esque flourishes, Bond themes, acid jazz, and an insanely catchy half-scat hook all into one boiling-over (and madly sexy) musical pot. "Boom" ends in a flash and her audience is cast into the fluttering, deliciously sugary pop soul of Nelly Furtado on the mournful, yet batty-eyed "Rain." Next, on "Some Dumb Girl," Anjulie channels Minnie Riperton at her most slinkily seductive, on a steamy piece of throwback '70s Philly soul-disco pop. And on and on it goes, on an alluring coming out of a record as hints of Laura Nyro, Regina Spektor, Beyoncé, and even Ben Folds sneak into the chilled mix. Anjulie is produced by her songwriting partner Jon Levine, ex-Philosopher Kings, the underappreciated '90s alternative soulsters whose ultra-slick R&B went down like silken chocolate, and the LP's smooth sound certainly echoes that of his old mates. While the record's not without its rough patches, dully derivative moments, and false notes ("Fatal Attraction" gets a bit silly with its tacked-on breathy hook), Anjulie is quite impressive as an opening salvo from a talented musical collagist whose minor flurry of hype is well-warranted.

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