Jabril Yousef – Wild Love (2021)

Jabril Yousef is undertaking a mammoth task with their debut EP Wild Love. Capturing the entire spectrum of tender emotions, they take listeners on a journey from the tender touch of young love to the depths of unconditional affection. This walkthrough of the different types of love draws on their journey of self-discovery for a whirlwind adventure that is both personal and entirely too relatable.

With the electronic folk-pop production skills of composer Isaac John, Yousef layers vulnerable lyrics over catchy melodies that bring commercial sounds to indie tenderness. The duo are childhood friends, but it was Yousef who got the ball rolling for this EP. They started writing in late 2020 and recorded acoustic demos before John received them and built the lush soundscapes that now grace our ears.

The EP opens with ‘Electric’ glitters and taps to life with a rich electronic soundscape. The layers of the melody bring an infinitely danceable rhythm to your ears that get your feet tapping and head bopping. The neon vocals weave between the layers of the music bringing a further electronic edge to the track. While danceable, there is a really easy vibe to the track that lets you sink back into it. This softness brings the blossoming of emotion to your soul and fills you with a glittering warmth that easily puts a smile on your face. If you are looking for a song that makes you feel better about everything, this is the one you should listen to.

‘Boxes’ has an earthier feeling compared to the opening track that comes through the opening with the acoustic guitar. The good vibes are still there but hit in a different way as they shine through the melody like the sun after a storm. There is a very honest and heartfelt feeling to this song that really comes through in the vocals and lyrics. They unleash a burst of happiness and affection that dances over the guitar tones. Through the track, Yousef and John have you running full tilt into love and affection without a care in the world.

There is a more subdued feeling to ‘Only 17’ as it opens with a deeper melodic line. This more subdued opening is a little at odds with the electronic edged vocals. The vocals draw you into a reflective mood as they reminisce over young love. Woven into the melody are sweet strings that bring the innocence of youth to the soundscape and creates a really tender chorus. As you listen to this track, you are thrown back in time to youthful relationships and the potential that they hold.

The title track ‘Wild Love’ has a building drive to the soundscape that is like the city lights at night. The drums roll through your senses while the guitar plucks a smile from your lips. Yousef’s vocals have you swaying to their movement while wanting to close your eyes and let everything wash over you. There is a great interplay between the melody and the vocals as they seem to create a call and response which is really wonderful. The story in the lyrics is relatable and delivered in a delicate way that touches your soul.

‘Face Like Yours’ uses a sound sample and acoustic guitar to get your attention and lead you into the track. The easy movement of the guitar shivers into the shuffling beats and light piano line. The vocals bring back the electronic edge for this track which is a delightful contrast to the really organic melody. This allows the vocals to hover over the wonderful music which enhances the emotions and story. Through the vocal performance, you can feel the affection felt for someone that has been artfully laced into each word. There is a rather dynamic movement to the melody that gets you really hooked to the track.

The piano line that opens ‘Stars’ pushes you into the soundscape where your senses are picked up by Yousef’s vocals. The piano-driven melody bolsters the melodic flows of the vocals that hook their talons into your brain. There are a lot of intense emotions woven into this track from longing to deep affection and uncertainty. The chorus is really catchy and you are going to find yourself singing it at random times throughout the day.

The EP comes to an end with ‘Heart Out’ which opens with a really rich soundscape. There is a velveteen feeling to the opening line that the electronic edged vocals skim over. The contrasting vibes of the melody and vocals capture your attention but they start to merge as the electronic notes in the melody come out. This allows the track to burst with light and affection that is tempered with heartbreak and sadness. This is potentially the most touching of the tracks on the EP as it reaches into your chest and squeezes.

Jabril Yousef with the help of Isaac John take you through the full spectrum of affection and love in the contrasting yet complementary tones of Wild Love. Throughout the EP, the duo tempers electronic vocals with organic melodies for a captivating flow. While each track is unique in its sound, they all carry the emotion of the EP as a whole and leave you feeling warm.

Find out more about Jabril Yousef on their website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Spotify.

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