Michael Kiwanuka – I’m Getting Ready EP

Michael Kiwanuka – I’m Getting Ready EP

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Michael Kiwanuka‘s ethos is easy to identify: soul singers of yesteryear along with minimalistic, acoustic instrumentation and gospel-like lyrics. A former session guitarist for British hip-hop acts, Kiwanuka’s buzz of late — both stateside and in his native England — has become almost larger than life.

I’m Getting Ready‘s spiritual bent is especially evident on the first (and title) track, complete with a small choir backing on the chorus and light drumming and electric guitar over an acoustic.

On “Any Day Will Do” (to whose name a “Fine” is added on the UK version), a full-though-mellow band provides the music that sounds like Ray Charles circa early 1960s. “I Need You By My Side” is also sparse, with as early-folk sound that features a restrained horn section punctuating Kiwanuka’s lyrics and delivery.

It all seems a bit basic, though Kiwanuka’s vocals are warm, velvety and slightly mysterious. For an easy road map: though he recently toured with fellow Brit Adele (heard of her?), his slow-burning, chilled-out neo-soul is a little more like Corinne Bailey Rae.

Chilling out, reflecting and listening closely is just what Michael Kiwanuka is inviting you to do —  and we’ll all be doing more of that  in years to come with this talented young artist.


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