It is normally easy to categorize the music of many artists, but Angela Sheik is not one of them. Such is the case with her latest single Bring It On from her forthcoming sophomore album Home Before Dark, which is scheduled for release next month.
A truly groundbreaking musical force of nature, Sheik’s enigmatic style presents a dynamic challenge for anyone trying to capture or pin her down with simple phrases or traditional categorizations. The crafty multi-instrumentalist (autoharp, theremin, flute) worked with producer (and fellow electronic fusion artist) RYAT to create a richly textured ten track exploration of deep grooves, infectious melodies, dynamic vocal harmonies and soulful ambiences as she grappled with spiritual issues in the wake of several deeply felt personal losses.
Though she has been compared to everyone from Billie Holiday to Imogen Heap, the expansive vibe of the album reflects many of her favorite lifelong influences, including tripnotic downtempo masters like Bjork, The Chemical Brothers, Portishead and contemporary artists like Jack White, Grizzly Bear, Sia and Zero7. The addition of RYAT’s fierce innovation brought the perfect touches, textures and effects to Sheik’s vision for the songs.
Based in Wilmington, Delaware, Sheik brilliantly fused her traditional singer/songwriter leanings with electronic innovations which she displayed on her debut 2011 EP Songs from the Red Box. Sheik went on to win the grand prize in the BOSS Loop Station 2011 U.S. National Finals, as well as the Philadelphia Songwriter Project Competition. She has also been twice voted as the Female Artist of the Year (93.7 WSTW Hometown Heroes). Her sensual rendition of Can’t Help Falling In Love from her 2013 full length album One By One was nominated for Best Cover Song by the Independent Music Awards.
The new single Bring it On is a study in contrasting styles that sets it apart from most other songs released this year. It is gritty and raw while making the listener tap their toes and bob their heads. The song pulls you in with its ethereal tones before the bass line takes over, locking you in the groove. Sheik’s vocals then lead you on a journey through her lyrical musings, reminiscent of OneRepublic’s Love Runs Out and Fitz and the Tantrums’ The Walker.
After listening to Bring it On, I can hardly wait for the release of Home Before Dark. If this single is any indication of the magic awaiting the listener of the new album, then be prepared for a powerful force to be unleashed on the music world.
For more information on Sheik, follow her on Facebook or Twitter. Be ready on September 16 for the release of an album that just might change your way of thinking.