Wednesday, June 12, 2013

#EDAS Album Review: Quadron Causes an "Avalanche" on Vested in Culture Records. Don't Miss Seeing Them This Summer!


by Matt (@EDAS2Go)

Label: Vested in Culture/Epic
June 4, 2013

Style: Natural Vocal Blessings,
Nighttime Kisses,
Singing While Sitting on a Piano,
Kinda Like MJ 

Audience: Diva Enablers, Tangoers,
Parched in the Pop Diaspora,
Anyone with a Pulse or Anything Loosely Resembling an Ear 

When I was a kid, everybody in the whole world listened to Michael Jackson and it was awesome. Nowadays a person can't walk into a deli without hearing Rihanna and it's just not the same. Somewhere between then and now, pop lost its way.

Full disclosure, I have always considered myself a voice of the voiceless. I spent my high school years in smoked out indie mosh pits and started listening to strange world music forms in college. I don't think my street cred is on trail here, but I've been to an experimental electronica show in the back of a chinese restaurant for godsakes. While I was music snobbing it up, I felt comfortable leaving the pop music for the populous. Every now and again I would relive the glory days of the genre with the occasional early Beatles, Ray Charles or Motown record, but for the most part I didn't touch the stuff. Then I heard Quadron.

Shortly after I first mentioned them on #EDAS well over a year ago, I exhausted my entire rolodex trying to get into their sold-out VIP performance at Cameo Gallery. The wild goose chase that led me all the way to the upper floors of the Sony Music Headquarters paid off in spades because that night was one of the most moving musical performances I have ever had the privilege to attend.

Coco Sings at Cameo Gallery 6/4/12
I could barely find this chic little venue buried in the back of a Williamsburg coffee shop, but I got there just in time to get my first glimpse of the amazing Coco O. Malaika. She was sporting some sort of high fashion throwback look from the '80s. You know... back when the bigger the shoulder-pads meant the more powerful the woman. She teased the audience with a few upbeat dancey numbers that didn't really show her range, but once a heartfelt ballad came up, she let loose a raw, soulful wail so pure, it legitimately gave me chills. That moment, I knew without a doubt that this is the best singer I have seen in my entire life. Someone in the audience was fortunate enough to be taping the exact moment when I was brought to the verge of tears just by her voice. It goes down four minutes in, when she changes gears from the first song, LFT, to the second, Pressure.

This my friends, could be the savior of pop music. The Danish Duo of Coco O. and producer extraordinaire Robin Hannibal are ready to convince you to put down that Neutral Milk test pressing and enjoy some current music with your fellow human beings again. They are in the right hands too. Sylvia Rhone, the former boss at Universal Motown, started her own label and she's ready to bet the farm on this one. I can't blame her. After about a year of slimming them down and polishing them up, Vested in Culture Records just unleashed the newest Quadron album and it's an Avalanche - ten tracks of pure, pop euphoria. If Sylvia gets her way, we will be hearing Coco and Robin everywhere. I, for one, would gladly welcome these blissful sounds to accompany my struggle to snag the whole milk from the Starbucks sugar counter.

This album is ready to unite the masses. Avalanche is not just appropriate for a wholesome dance recital, it's also for first year college roommates who think they don't have anything in common, or a twenty-five year old millennial to bump while he still lives with his mother. Even the most exclusive music fan will find their toes tapping to the sound of Coco's glacier-pure voice over Hannibal's rich instrumental arrangements. There is a little bit of everything on this one too; a prospective club anthem in "Hey Love," some sexier saucier songs, like Better Off with Kendrick Lamar and a huge vocal haymaker aptly called "Crush." The balance of the album is made up of sweet dance songs that will have you remembering the days of the moonwalk.  Will Quadron be able to fully ascend the throne and bring some authenticity to pop stardom? Only time will tell, but I think there is enough raw talent to do it. Buy their album from The Official Quadron Store or iTunes, but definitely make the trek and see them for free on July 27th at Central Park Summerstage.

Verdict: Buy the album in every format and take it everywhere with you just in case you run into someone who hasn't heard it. If #EDAS had a number based rating system, Avalanche would be a 10!

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