From The Start – Likeness (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

There’s a great attitude driving the heart of, not only this song but Likeness’ attitude towards music in general. By understanding that music comes from within, that it is an extension of our very souls and that the sounds and styles that we work with are merely sonic building blocks, tools to get a job done, he goes at the task with a very freeing mindset. Once you rid yourself of tribal allegiances to genres and fashions, do away with musical demarcations, stop putting labels on yourself and your creations, you can make the music that best expresses who you are, which really is only bordered by your own personality and imagination.

From The Start sees Likeness embracing myriad styles which he then weaves into his own signature sound. There is a hip-hop core to the grooves and beats but around this, he gathers a soul-pop sound, one with a slightly nostalgic, nineties vibe. Rap sections deliver deft and dexterous lyrics, choruses are accessible and sing-along and there is a pulsing, bassline driven dance groove keeping everything infectious and instantaneous.

Like all great contemporary songs, it is this blend of the familiar and the forward-thinking that makes things work so well. From The Start sounds both like a song that you have been listening to all your life, and yet also new, fresh and inventive. It is a song that you may have only just heard but it is also one that you immediately know how to dance to. It sounds like the best of the past, is perfect for the present and also it beats a path to a post-genre, cross-pollinated musical future.

Musical building blocks rarely change, what you do with those sonic tools, however, is the real test. It’s a test that Likeness passes with flying colours.

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