Kaleem Taylor is a man on a mission. Having already supported the likes of Miguel and Boyz II Men, as well as racking up close to 160,000 video views for his Frank Ocean “Thinking About You” cover as part of a live session at the legendary Maida Vale studios for Trevor Nelson, the West London soul star is on the up and up. Now releasing his second EP, Alone is a well structured, carefully produced, and vocally enjoyable affair.
Not only does he bring heartfelt lyrics to the table, but there are times throughout the eight track EP where he leads listeners in to the instrumentally abstract phase of his game. Uplifting listeners with the mid-tempo gem “It’ll Get Better,” Taylor’s simplistically beautiful words – “Although the sun doesn’t shine today/ Don’t let it get you down” – interact with the track’s piano riff in an organic manner solely built for big smiles. Acting as a lone soldier tempo-wise, it’s definitely a standout as far as the EP goes.
Obviously influenced by the likes of Frank Ocean and The Weeknd, Taylor’s intricately detailed love stories take you on a journey into a songwriting process today’s top 40 pop starlets wouldn’t have a clue how to execute. “Magic” hears the young crooner slowly but surely ride a courageously experimental slice of production where he believes that love can take on the form of magic. With a relaxing one minute or so instrumental closing the track, it’s easy to see that Taylor constructed the song with the intention of covering all bases and easing those with listening ears into a state of musical equilibrium.
With love reigning supreme as the EP’s most important subject matter, track’s such as “I Will” and “Where” are a part of a story. With the EP acting as a lovers guide to occurrences associated with a relationship, a track like “I Will” is the courting/convincing stage, while “Where” hears Taylor asking, “Where did it go wrong?”
At times throughout the project Taylor’s vocal inflections make it hard to understand certain words or sentences, while the low-tempo flow of it needs a few more upbeat pick-me-up selections. Hopefully with the journey he’s on, the grind, as well as the successes he will undoubtedly achieve, will help him pick up a few pointers. With a full-length album in the works, if he’s able to hone in on his skill and polish the weaker parts up a bit then there’s a possibility he might just be able to become the UK’s number one soul prospect.