Emmanuel Dalmas – Soundcloud Songs – Singles Review
Someone’s been busy in 2018! This is the fourth installment of Emmanuel Dalmas tunes here in review at the homepage, all from this same year even! Safe to say that this artist has been creatively inspired – you can hear that in the diverse & versatile range of his material for sure – but right there on his page at Soundcloud online, you can certainly see the evidence with your own two eyes as well. Dalmas has been pushing himself as an artist in all kinds of directions clearly – and as always, every time he seems to release something new, we find a couple more reasons to love the guy. No exceptions to that rule today here in review; I’ve got my favorites of the bunch of course like anyone else would, but perhaps more than anything else, I just really appreciate the straight-up variety that Emmanuel brings to his music.
My ears highly appreciate that they still never know what to expect from this guy other than the consistent quality he incorporates into his ideas & art. No matter the style he chooses, the sound is always remarkably clear, well produced, and passionately performed. Because Dalmas is so willing & ready to explore many facets of music, we’re all bound to have our own favorites from his large selection of songs & sounds…but as far as that quality is concerned, he never wavers. And like I was saying – I never know what to expect – who would have thought he’d just go and incorporate the sound of Big Ben’s famous clock-bell into an EDM/Dance-track like he does on “Dancing On Air?” If you saw that coming, you’re got psychic abilities to be that precise; the best I can do is expect the unexpected from this artist. I had no problem repeating “Dancing On Air” multiple times…I wouldn’t say it was my favorite of this particular set of four new singles – but I still enjoyed it thoroughly. The melody works…wasn’t always entirely sure about the keyboard sounds that form it, though I’m sure that’d be plenty enticing to many other people out there. I loved the way the low-end pulse of the bass comes through so subtly but so noticeably, and I think the vibe overall has an uplifting energy to it that is stylistically designed to put a lil’ pep in your step this summer – ain’t nothing wrong with that. I suppose for me, what it came down to on “Dancing On Air” that caught my attention most occurred mainly towards the end. I think the Big Ben bell idea was cool…but nearly a secondary factor here if at all in behind the brightness of that main rhythm line from the synth. It becomes part of the atmosphere & background quickly – and for me, it wasn’t really until around the third minute that “Dancing On Air” really started to find some truly unique ideas that were thoroughly engaging for the ideas, not just captivating through hypnotic repetition like much of this first single tends to be. So…in short, that left me with about forty or so seconds of – ‘where was all that good stuff earlier on?’ and kind of questioning what Dalmas was going for on this one. If he was looking to create a straight-up EDM track, then the ending that I love is almost an unnecessary twist; but if he was looking to take this track in the more artistic direction that it ends up in eventually – then why not flex that muscle earlier on? I might just be frustrated because I think there are some real key elements added to the end of “Dancing On Air” that made me want a whole lot more of that innovation you find in this song’s final moments. Best way I can put it, is that knowing what Emmanuel is capable of after hearing so many of his tunes at this point, is that the beginning three-minutes of “Dancing On Air” feels like safe terrain for an artist that can clearly push the boundaries even further, which again, is demonstrated right there in the creativity found within the ending of this single. Still a great vibe and uplifting energy…I just know there’s more in this artist and that’s what I’m looking for.
So I continued my search and kept on listening. “Slow It Down!” became the next single I checked out – and it’s a bit closer to what I love most in Emmanuel’s music…I’m always a huge fan of his piano-driven melodies and I dig the way he plays quite a bit. When it comes to “Slow It Down!” I think he flashes significant moments of brilliance in the melody he’s composed, particularly when the sounds of the piano comes through at its boldest on this song. There are moments where this track did feel like it wanders a bit compared to the usual focus applied to Emmanuel’s writing…but in the end, I felt like it was a journey worth taking with him. The reason being, that, even though there are definitely parts that are tougher to follow or stick with, the parts that came through and connected were not just brilliantly unique, but empathic, sincere, heartfelt, and beautiful to listen to. At almost six-minutes in length, I have no doubt that people would have a harder time following the writing & structure of this tune, but the strength of performance is definitely worth the time investing in figuring out this maze of melody. There are genuinely spine-tingling moments on “Slow It Down!” that you might not realize are even happening…but listen to the resonance of some of these notes ring-out into the atmosphere as the melody continues…that’s a sound that comes with authentic passion in the playing, and it’s left there purposely because Emmanuel has the foresight to understand that connection & how it plays a role. This wonderful resonance creeps in a few times throughout “Slow It Down!” and every single time it did, it damn near took my breath away entirely…it’s like an echo or an afterthought of the original sound that Dalmas has chosen fading away, but MAN, that’s a fantastic part of the magic on this second single. “Slow It Down!” is enchanting, inviting, curious, & sweetly melodic…strong emotions are explored here.
Now…the notes I’ve got here mention that “When Will I Be Famous” is a work in progress still…right now it’s the instrumental base for a full-on Pop song apparently. That’s gonna be a seriously great move for Dalmas – the potential of this particular track is MASSIVE. Very stoked to hear that this song has a shot at finding another life apart from the one it has now – because these are single-worthy hooks that deserve to be polished up completely and put right out there into the world. As it stands here, the ideas are what stand-out most…the hook in that main keyboard-piano-led melody is such a huge draw it could pull in an entire planet by itself…here in this particular recording, it’s all coming through a bit too hot through the boards and right on the edge of being up too high in the mix…but that’s OK with me – if this is how I can get this melody right now, I’ll happily take it. THIS is the set of ideas and that strong connection between the melody & music I was looking for from Dalmas though…THIS is the kind of stunning ability he has to create sincerity through sound and practically stop time from moving around you. At only two & a half-minutes in length – THIS is the song that I wanted to go on for six minutes rather than “Slow It Down!” personally, but I also think the short length is part of the reason why every second of this idea plays so fantastically focused. I’d say that, IF Emmanuel does plan to re-record this one for the Pop version, which I’m assuming he will, I’d go for about a minute longer to really allow for that singer, whoever he finds to collaborate with & fit the role, to have the ability to maximize the strength & potential that the hooks in the music he’s written provide. In my humble opinion, there’s a massively moving moment just waiting to be created for “When Will I Be Famous” – Dalmas has created exceptional music that really warrants that further exploration to bring the best out of this one. I might recommend bringing down the backing-layer of the rhythm-line for the piano just slightly to help that lead stand out more and for us to not hear the pound-pound-pound as distinctly; it’s the low-end part of the melody and will always come through loud enough to support the sparkling lead…I’d take it down just a notch or two, or perhaps add a slight reverb maybe to sink it a bit more into the mix. Honestly, it’s a hard call to make…there’s part of me that doesn’t want to give Emmanuel a single piece of advice when it comes to this track because I think he’s totally on the right path and I’ve got no desire to change the course he’s already on. So I’ll say this…he could tinker with this…there are likely ways to bring even more out of what he’s created here…but as it stands, as it is right here, right now in its RAWEST form, still just an idea in incubation perhaps – “When Will I Be Famous” is nothing short of stunning already.
The notes I’ve got here…are interesting. It wasn’t until I saw the comment on “The Tender Years” and how it says it’s a ‘sad piano instrumental’ that I realized, hey – isn’t that for US to decide? Just made me start to think about the impact that assigning labels or emotions to music can cause on a listener, and I found it interesting when it came to this final new tune from the set of four, because I didn’t feel sad at all! Reflective, contemplative, emotional for sure. Mind you, I’m the kind of person that loves to dwell in the past & revel in nostalgia just as much as I like to move forward in life – so for me, this gentle, delicate, atmospherically-inclined piano composition really hit home for me…it allowed me that opportunity to close my eyes and drift away into my own memories & thoughts, just as I’d imagine Emmanuel intended. I think he’s done another incredible job on “The Tender Years” – and while I can’t imagine it’s destined for the radio any time soon, it’s not designed for that purpose and it WILL find its way on to many playlists out there. Because this is an example of getting it right when it comes to the intended design of the music and the way that we’re supposed to hear it…it’s like visualizing the highlight reel of your life with this song as your soundtrack. I think Emmanuel plays this song with true technique, passion, and an expert’s touch…the way he controls the mix of beauty, mystery, and the curious nature of the melody is revealed perfectly through the insightful way he plays this song, punching those keys and low-end tones at all the right spots to add the drama & impact required to really move you. And then, he’ll take it all away and leave “The Tender Years” at its threadbare best, with clever pacing and space filling the room just as much as his piano can – the combined result of which are magnificent to listen to and remarkably professionally restrained.
Always a complete pleasure to listen to Emmanuel Dalmas…he’s always capable of something truly extraordinary and I’m positive we found examples of that yet again in this set of four tunes & new ideas. And I’m equally positive that we’ll find even more reasons to dig what he does in the next set of tunes that comes our way…you can always bank on Emmanuel to bring his A-game & something seriously special to experience, and his limitless potential will continue to elevate his music to fantastic places.
Find out more about Emmanuel Dalmas at his official page at Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Dalmas-Emmanuel-Manutube-626014617571692/
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