Written By: Fletcher Bonin
Rationale, the stage name of Tinashe Fazakerley, has just released his latest project, an EP entitled Vessels. Upon listening to this four track project, you’ll realize just how appropriate this title is in relation to his unique sound. The EP indeed plays like the throb of a heart, passionately beating soulful harmonies in perfect rhythm. The tempo throughout the album is consistent, featuring Rationale’s eloquent vocals. He sings over upbeat, steady synth beats that highlight his power of range and impeccable vocal control. Born in Zimbabwe, Rationale honed his talent in Britain, influenced by a number of rappers and R&B singers. This diverse background comes through in his music, especially on this latest EP, Vessels.
He warbles his way through the slower tracks while his voice soars freely on others. Rationale’s voice certainly carries the weight of the load throughout the EP. His rhythmic R&B style deserves recognition for talent he displays on Vessels. There is plenty to like about these four tracks. Whether you are looking for some laid back music to head bob to as you drive to or from work, or even a few new tracks for your bedroom playlist, this EP is for you. Regardless, Rationale’s vocals refused to be ignored. Rather, they stand out clearly and in epic fashion, matching the swell and fall of his instrumental accompaniments.
Originally released as a single, the track ‘Tethered’ is perhaps Rationale’s most heartfelt recording off of the new EP. This song is slow and pensive, and he sings in a high tenor to begin the song before ranging into a melodic wail against a steady electronic backbeat. He sings with the depth of emotion that only personal reflection can achieve. It is this level of vulnerability that I think all R&B music aspires to, the ability to communicate emotion so beautifully, so effectively.
That being said, my favorite track of the EP is the title track ‘Vessels’. Starting slow, Rationale sings, “most people I know wouldn’t know that they’re living a lie, tracing every penny, clinging onto a lonely life, we have a choice to define our fate, fall in line or break the chain.” His lyrics are subtle and poetic, sung to us from a mature and experienced standpoint. He has a voice that we trust and follow hopefully. Whether recently heartbroken or newly in love, Rationale’s latest project Vessels is the answer. I for one am excited to see what he will do with a full studio album.