Lavender Galaxy is the artistic moniker of a musical collective that consists of executive producer Eric Remington, engineer Nick Ortega and the vocalists Nekane, Marvin Fockens and Antonia Fountain. Their combined talents fuse to create a blend of RnB and melodic house that brings to mind artists like Pharell Williams, Rihanna, Major Lazer and Dua Lipa. This year has seen the release of their first EP containing five tracks, which have quickly become very popular on streaming services.
The EP starts off with the sultry dancehall-infused RnB of Paradise, sung superbly by Antonia Fountain. Driven by decidedly funky slap bass, the breakdown chorus and build up is very effective, the EDM synths giving it a modern sounding edge. A very fine piece of songwriting, performance and production with plenty of commercial and dancefloor appeal.
Livin’ It Up is a fantastic follow up, an intoxicating blend of Get Happy-style RnB/disco with the slick, funky grooves and propulsive basslines of Jamiroquai. Featuring the charismatic and smooth lead vocals of Marvin Fockens, the track is laced with catchy hooks, including the pulsing Giorgio Moroder-esque synth arpeggios.
Every section of the song is memorable and addictively catchy, the anthemic chorus celebrating a carefree, hedonistic lifestyle. It sounds like the hit of the summer waiting to happen.
Third song, I’ll Follow You, is another potential hit, once again featuring the gorgeous voice of Antonia Fountain. Set at a stately, slinky tempo, Antonia delivers a sexy Rihanna-style vocal over a bedrock of chugging, rhythmic synths and a punchy beat. The chorus hook is mesmeric and irresistible (“We’re turning up the music and dancing till the sun rises…”).
Fourth track Lip Gloss is built around a sturdy 2/4 house beat and a revolving four chord synth progression. This one features the ethereal and enchanting vocals of Nekane, another gifted singer in the Lavender Galaxy collective. With its immediately addictive chorus hook and ‘easy on the ear’ sound, it has versatile potential as both a hit in the clubs and on radio.
The EP closes with another Antonia Fountain-sung track, Here You Are. This one is a potent fusion of dubstep and RnB, with a powerful vocal performance from Antonia. It’s perhaps the most cutting edge track in terms of production style and genre, and, as with the rest of the songs here, has a killer vocal hook that sticks in the mind from the first listen (“You turned me upside down….”). At the risk of repeating myself, this also has strong potential as a separate single release and it’s a fine way to finish.
Overall, this is a first rate modern RnB/house EP from Lavender Galaxy, featuring five songs that stand up in their own right. There are very few EPs where every track has hit potential, but that’s exactly the case in this instance. Having a plethora of singers in their collective gives richness and variety to the sound, along with the mixture of genres and production styles. With further material of this quality, I’d say that Lavender Galaxy have a very bright future ahead of them.
VERDICT = 9.2 out of 10