Ahead of Seven Davis Jr’s forthcoming debut album Universes on Ninja Tune – the London label that’s bagged a number of gems this year – we thought we’d share why the latest preview has got us suitably hot under the collar for its release on July 24th.
Moved to write about the violence he had read or seen against African Americans at the hands of the law, ‘Fighters’ is an ode to the futile nature of this violence that results only in more pain as we have recently seen with the riots in Baltimore. A grave subject matter for one who’s previous work features titles such as P.A.R.T.Y and Friends. Fortunately it still oozes Davis Jr with his looped backing harmony giving it a bluesy street corner performance feel. What’s more his verses do not simply follow along the musical path paved by the instrumentation but rather carve their own path aside from the jamming bass riff and tribal drum patter. Seven’s pithy verses toy with the jaggedness of a staccato, at times quick and abrupt at others long and smooth. It’s that unpredictability that has always given him an adlib rawness which invites intrigue and forces an acute ear from the listener, while at the same time cleverly packing extra passion into the longer notes.
Appearing in the second half of the album ‘Fighters’ is one of the only contemplative tracks on the album, along with ‘Afterlife’, both of which Seven refers to as ‘ballads’. The album’s general tone however stays true to Seven’s humorous and honest style that fans of the man since The Lost Tapes Vol. 1 days will not be disappointed, and will undoubtedly lasso in the hips of any untainted ears. Roll on July.
Universes will be released 24th July 2015. Pre-order at Ninja Tune now.