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Saturday, November 16, 2013

Aradia - Possibilities: Light EP

\Aradia –Possibilities: Light EP
2013, Aradia

Aradia is a Seattle-based singer/songwriter with a penchant for insightful, observational lyrics and electronic sounds.  A veteran of both the New York City and Atlanta music scenes, Aradia has developed her sound in bands such as Some Band (NYC) and Twelfth Planet (Atlanta).  The latter was a mainstay in the Atlanta scene.  Aradia is intellectual and smooth in style, with an electric stage presence and a sultry voice with dark colors swirling beneath.  Aradia’s latest EP, Possibilities: Light EP, is a companion piece to 2012’s Possibilities:  Dark EP.  Whereas previously she explored the underbelly of completely changing your life and moving to a new city, this time around she is finding the silver linings in those dark clouds.

Aradia opens with the bright, airy electro-pop of "The Light", a positively themed message of hope that things will get better. The dance and electro elements are understated but clear, and Aradia's complex and intriguing voice is a perfect contrast.   "Trouble" starts out in slightly darker territory, but lights up with a brilliant pop feel. "Today" is a bit mundane in sound, lacking much in the way of dynamic engagement. It's a solid enough album track, but doesn't engage the listener enough to shine. 

"On Fire" finds Aradia settling into a more aggressive, dance-oriented sound. Aradia's vocal presentation is confident and sultry, with a sense of personal style that is compelling. "Slow Ur Roll" drops the tempo, and while Aradia is very competent vocally, the energy just isn't here. It all comes back for "Keep On", which brings sitar and eastern rhythms into play for one of the most musically interesting compositions in Aradia's catalog. This song will get stuck in your head and stay there, and has serious potential as a breakout track for either the club scene or for commercial radio. 

The common difficulty for artists who dwell in the electronic backwaters of what has become popular music is that it is easy to become indistinguishable from the throng.  Electronic music tends to suffer from a lack of dynamics in sound and style. It is easy to allow looping sounds to fall into repetitive waves that numb the listener rather than enliven them.  Aradia reaches beyond the easy path to create vibrant music, and her sultry, earthy vocal style brings each song to life.  Possibilities: Light is a breakout effort for Aradia; the sort that could garner her much more attention down the line.  Aradia is one artist to keep an eye (and ear) open for.

Rating:  4 Stars (Out of 5)

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