DiViNe SeVeN - INTROSPECT, THE LP | The Wonderful World of Carminelitta

Album review: INTROSPECT, THE LP, DiViNe SeVeN

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Cover artwork for DiViNe SeVeN's INTROSPECT, THE LP

As is sometimes (err.. often actually) the case, I got slightly side-tracked and overwhelmed by music in the past weeks and months, which created a delay in me writing this review. But this INTROSPECT LP is such a beautiful album that I had to tell you more about it. I hope DiViNe SeVeN and you won’t be too mad at me for taking so long and that it will be worth the wait. Now, let me tell you more about this excellent album…

One of the things I appreciate most about artists, on top of providing quality music, is their ability to evolve and explore different ways to express themselves, to touch upon new subjects or at least to approach them in a new way. As the title suggests, this INTROSPECT LP  is a journey into the heart and mind of DiViNe SeVeN, where he is extremely open about what’s going on in his life and what his various experiences taught him. This is not to say he was not already sharing personal thoughts and feelings on other projects, but this is the overall concept of the album and he goes a little further than previously. He is obviously not the only one to create such an album, which sounds like a diary, but it is precisely because it is his that it is so original and unique.

What struck me at first as I listened to the album was the production, which is a slight departure from what he is usually doing, with a great use of soul and jazz samples, giving the album a particular, somewhat nostalgic touch. Once again, this is nothing new and many artists are using this kind of samples, but I feel it fits perfectly here and helps convey the feelings expressed, while creating the appropriate atmosphere for the listeners to immerse themselves in. There is a very intimate, thoughtful element on this album and the different vocals sampled as well as the instruments (mainly horns and piano) make us travel back in time at the same time as we discover the world DiViNe SeVeN is depicting. While he is talking about his past and current life, the music makes us reminisce on our own history and remember the good and bad times. Something else that is quite new and a very welcome addition is collaboration with singers, who add another smooth soulful touch that blends perfectly with the overall feeling of introspection.

Continue reading after the jump…

With this beautiful, dark, sometimes heavy mood set, it is all the easier for the MC and his guests to pour their heart into the music and share their innermost thoughts. There are actually quite a few other MCs on the album, but this is paradoxically not a problem and INTROSPECT still sounds very intimate. Most tracks deal with personal topics and experience, but there is always the inclusion of other themes such as society, religion and love in a broader sense. There are rays of hope here and there, but I would say the overall feeling is that of a rather dim outlook on life, something that is perfectly underlined with the instrumentals. Two words that would describe the project are melancholic and reflective, which make it easy to relate to for people who have ever felt the same (I assume this is the case for most people). There is definitely a spiritual element as well and DiViNe SeVeN is sharing his knowledge and views with quite a few religious references that make most of the songs sound quite intellectual. I know this may not be to everyone’s taste, but this is something I greatly appreciate as it provides food for thought and touches my mind as well as my heart.

I mentioned earlier the overall darkness on the album, but there are some lighter notes, mainly when he is talking about love or spreading inspiring messages about the need to keep pushing and believe in better days to come. Among those brighter tracks, I need to mention the beautiful Still Jonesin’ (My Ode To H.E.R.) that is a testimony to the power of love and what he can put you through, good and bad. There is balance in this track, but I feel the beauty of love overcomes the hardships and the song therefore constitutes a message of hope. Another track that stands out for me is the beautiful Me, Myself & I, as it is capturing the essence of the album and its intimate element. Once again, it is most probably quite easy for anyone to relate to that desire to be left alone sometimes, to disconnect from the world around and find yourself with your thoughts. Hakim Rasheed’s beautiful vocals on here make the song all the more powerful. Finally, I need to mention the amazing Introspect (Smile Today), one of the rays of hope on the album, where you are reminded that no matter what happens, you always have to smile and be grateful for what you have.

There are actually way too many tracks I wanted to talk about, but that would take me days and dozens of pages so I will stop it now and strongly encourage you to discover INTROSPECT, THE LP for yourself. It is dark, powerful and inspiring and should touch your heart and your mind while giving you some motivation to keep on pushing and make the most of your time on Earth.

Enter the mind of DiViNe SeVeN and discover INTROSPECT, THE LP. You can buy it on the Bandcamp page or simply by clicking on the link below. Enjoy and spread the word!

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