Alutepena Hughes-John is giving us a sneak peek into what her upcoming album is all about with the EP Lockdown. The 4-track release covers a range of genres while offering an insight into the melodic flows she has in store for us. Combining recently written songs with some that have been floating around for a while, she draws you into her sound and prepares you for what is to come.
In her first release since 2017, she is defying genres and offers a fresh sound. Since she started writing songs at age 8, Hughes-John has dabbled with music throughout her life. Creating a safe space through her music, she invites us into the fold of security through her songs.
The EP starts with the title track ‘Lockdown’ which hits out with a livelier vibe than you might imagine. The beats capture your attention from the first tone, but her vocals really grip you and keep you listening. The lyrics are interesting as they consider the emotions the first lockdown created and how people viewed the power that be at the time. This is a very relatable start to the EP and is a lot of fun to listen to. There is a dynamic flow to the music that capture the essence of the emotions felt at the time.
‘Dreaming of a Dream’ has a more post-punk vibe to the melody mixed with a dash of reggae. The melody is really interesting as the horns pop from the lower levels while the main line has you in an almost tropical vibe. The lyrics are a little at odds with this chilled melody as the song was written years ago at the time of the London riots. There are a lot of negative emotions threaded into the lyrics, but the melody and vocals use a lively vibe to bring them to light. This is a very interesting choice between it puts a completely different spin on things and has you interacting with these emotions differently.
The opening of ‘Another Maria’ has a more solid rock feel before the warbling tones warp against your ears. The rock beats are still present, but they form a foundation for the song instead of the driving force. There is a light thread that rises from the depths of the melody to take you soaring with it. When the vocals enter, they float in with this light thread to draw you further along the soundscape.
The album ends with ‘Lockdown (Instrumental)’ which hits a bit harder than the opening version of this song. Without the vocals, you are drawn into the post-punk and rock stylings a bit more. The beat gets your head bobbing to its rhythm while the guitar lines fill you with the emotions of lockdown. There is a sense constraint within the melody tempered by bursts of acceptance and understanding.
Alutepena Hughes-John gives you an insight into her mind through the 4-tracks of Lockdown. Drawing on a range of different musical styles, she covers you in post-punk, reggae and rock melodies while her vocals take you through emotions and thoughts.