Written By: Kayleigh King
‘Kiddo’ is an EP offering from Jessie Reyez , who performed her debut song “Figures” as a rising star on the BET Awards this year. With only 7 songs the album initially looks like a meagre offering. This opinion is blown out of the water when you actually listen to the tracks. From the first track ‘Fuck It’, the tone is set. The music is strong and antagonistic in a way that young women everywhere can empathize with and is what we are usually told we can’t have. The tracks have a R&B vibe, twisted with some honest soul that stirs me.
The most startling track was ‘Gatekeeper’. The song tells a narrative about dreams almost becoming a nightmare, with a producer promising big things if only she would “spread her legs” and “get drunk and get naked”. The track has an honest truth that stays with you. You begin with anger that the wrongful entitlement that more than likely goes on in the music industry, but ending with the feeling that you know she didn’t give in even if it’s not explicitly expressed. If you can, check out the video, it is incredibly well-made and fits the track perfectly.
‘Great One’ is the final track on the EP, and it doesn’t disappoint. To me, ‘Great One’ is a confident song about needing someone. It is beautiful, without an overload of flowery sweetness and complete with vocals that err close to belting at times. The music flows with the vocals, never jarring, just supporting the lyrics.
I have seen many opinions that have compared Jessie to Amy Winehouse, and while I can see where this came from as Jessie has a sexually soulful voice which was a trademark of Amy’s, I can’t help but feel like this sells Jessie short. She is an artist in her own right and she has the talent to reach the same heights as Amy Winehouse, and deserves her own recognition. To me Jessie Reyez is already a great one.
‘Figures’ is the track that draws this comparison the most from what I have seen. I can hear the similarities, but only in the sense that Jessie is bringing something to the table that hasn’t successfully been done since Amy. Jessie is not a copy, but a fantastic artist that I will be following closely. And I can’t wait to see what she brings out next.