“If you fed the meat of D’Angelo, Leon Bridges and Miguel into pop’s sausage machine, you’d squeeze Samm Henshaw out of the end” ~~ The Guardian
From touring the UK with James Bay to receiving massive support from 1xtra and Radio 1, we can honestly say we were expecting nothing but excellent from Samm Henshaw’s new tunes. And boy did Henshaw deliver the full three-course meal with an extra side of soul!
The first track off The Sound Experiment II EP was inspired by Samm’s childhood growing up in South London, and the experience of his Nigerian-parents.
“I wrote ‘Our Love’,” he says now, “about a story my Dad tells from when he first started dating my Mum: his family didn’t approve, but he didn’t care.” Musically, the track fuse influences from D’Angelo, Stevie Wonder, Frank Ocean and the gospel greats. Honestly, Samm could be singing about any nonsense in the world and still sound phenomenal. The passion and conviction carry beyond the melodies in a way that touches your soul upon listening. The subtle bass line in combination with the rhythmic claps creates a sense of community and togetherness that fosters the tone for the rest of the EP.
Continuing the fun, “These Hands” slows it down while offering an exceptional head-bobbin’ tune that is sure to make your body move, mind relax, and your soul come alive. The gospel-like chorus creates a powerfully inviting sound that adds to the sense of community established earlier on in the EP. Samm experiments with grandiose sounds encompassing monumental vocals and instrumentation and then contrasts those vibrations with simple chords.
Channeling his inner-John Legend, Samm provides a simpler tune on “Night Calls”. Although the track may seem easy to follow at first, the enigmatic lyrics deciphering the complexity of dreams and reality prove otherwise. Regardless of the fact that the soul-singer is stripped down, Henshaw’s dynamism is just as powerful.
The beat picks back up during the fourth track, “Chances”. Samm urges individuals to take chances, as he deems to “take what you want, we’re nothing without these chances, you live and you love, you learn and you lose.” Although Samm does acknowledge that yeah, sometimes when you take a risk things don’t always go as planned, taking a leap of faith will only help you grow.
The EP ends with the most outstanding parts of each song and rolls them into one scrumptious piece of pizza. The impeccable instrumentation of “Our Love,” the solid lyrics of “Chances,” and the inquisitive contrast of both abundant and simple sounds found in “These Hands.”
The Sound Experiment II is out now via Sony Music.
Following a string of sold-out shows, the soulful 22-year-old will embark on an extensive European festival run including the Afropunk Festival, Liverpool Sound City and more. Find tour dates here.
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