New In Town: Jaime Woods

On the hunt for a ramming summer jammer for Summer '15 has proven to be a difficult exercise as so few up-tempos have piqued my fancy this year. Okay, okay there are a few worthy candidates like this, and this, but I think Janet Jackson messed me up a bit because ever since "No Sleeep" dropped I didn't realize how much I was feening for something of a slower pace. Depending on your view, Jackson was either brilliant or out-of-touch to release "No Sleeep", because love for slower, more soulful tracks seems to be all but dissipated, but from how well-received the single has been...Miss Jackson might be bringing back the need to turn that blue light back on.

Jackson has some company though, as Chi-Town triple talent and Berklee College of Music alum, Jaime Woods slinks into the soft folds of soul with her EP, TROY, providing the perfect soundtrack for lounging and meditating as the summer lawns hiss. While Woods' resume is impressive as she has orbited the the artistic auras of Bilal, Emily King, and Nick Hakim during her time at Berklee, her intimate six-tracker debut is where she really seals the deal towards her artistry. Her talent was noted back when she allowed her gospel upbringing to navigate a cover of Little Dragon's "After The Rain", evoking a lovely and vocally raw re-work, but on TROY her velveteen vox is a little more willowy, tender, as she bares her feelings with an intense intimacy that can't be slighted.

Strong influences from faves like King and Feist are present, especially with the fantastic debut single, "Hello Morning" and the guitar-laced duo of "Talk To Me" and "If You Were Mine". Woods is even more so vocally and lyrically prime with her down-tempos, as she is gentile and longing on "Home", while quietly haunting as her heart breaks into millions of sharp, unmendable pieces on the closing soul shiver of "Can't Let It Go".

It takes a lot to impress me these days, but Jaime Woods passes the first impression with ease, as TROY hints at a lot of great things to come from this talented poetess.

Turn that blue light on...

+ For more information about Jaime Woods, 'Artnois' has a nice little interview with her that is well-worth a glance.

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