Cupidkarma – +Gold (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

Cupidkarma is an album that could only exist today. Not just for the fact that it sounds so utterly modern and refreshing but also because at 70 tracks long, a physical version of such an album would probably not get past the planning and costing stage. Thankfully times have changed and technology allows artists to work in all mnner of previously undreamt of ways.

My first worry with the size of Cupidkarma is consistency. Could an artist maintain the standards across what, for most artists, would be four or five albums of music? And the answer is a resounding yes! Its size also allows +Gold to explore any number of genres and styles and whilst the album is built around a soulful-pop core sound, he uses it to hop-genres, blurs lines and be adventurous and creative.

Tracks such as Like That are as good as any mainstream pop dance track that you would find in the charts right now, infectious, fresh and fun, and the title track brings the slow R&B ballad bang up to date but there is room for so much more to. Chain Breaker bristles and bounces with lilting Afro-beat grooves, Everything Changes is the sound of a chilled, early hours anthem at the best club in town, No War is a wall of cinematic sounds interspersed with chiming, acoustic guitars and Get On Up is a Chic style funky beast.

I could go on but rather than analyzing the individual tracks too closely, that is, after all, a pleasure that should be left to the listener, Let’s talk about why this album stands out. Cupidkarma, like all albums, is a chance for an artist to sonically stretch out and show us what they can do, +Gold manages to stretch out much further and much more effortlessly than most and presents us with a music spectrum running from timeless soul to futuristic dance, from electro-rock to acoustic pop, all polished and presented afresh for the modern age.

But more than that, you will marvel at the consistency. Some artists seem to feel l lost even across the span of one long-playing record…not that we have those much anymore, but you know what I mean…but here, +Gold shows us how to create a core sound and then proceed to push it to its feasible limits, trading conformity with creativity, grace with groove and freshness with familiarity in varying amounts as he lays out his sonic stall.

Presenting an album of this size isn’t something that I recommend most artists try, But then most artists aren’t +Gold!

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