B-âhwe - Sweet (Single Release)
Leeds' neo-soul virtuoso B-âhwe released her single 'Sweet' on 1 May, the third single that will feature on her debut EP Nuance which arrives on 29 May.
B-âhwe has been busy over the past few years since her debut single release back in 2017, collaborating across genres of lo-fi, hip-hop and jazz with artists such as Lausse the Cat, Nix Northwest, TAMBALA, Spacey Basement Cult and Yaatri as well as building her presence with this solo project at the forefront of the jazz and soul scene in Leeds. Her stylistic versatility is immense and this single showcases her adaptability in being able to flow effortlessly between hip-hop and neo-soul.
‘Sweet’ takes a microscope to the continued societal oppression of women through preconceived gender stereotypes, examined through the confusion of a broken relationship. The keys start and glow with a heavenly sensation as B-âhwe's vocals add to the tender atmosphere. Drifting between rapped sections interspersed with singing, the song acts as an inner monologue, with B-âhwe emphasising her inner conflict stating “my head and heart contradicted”, in reference to both the relationship, and her feelings towards what her role in society is perceived to be.
The bass drives this first verse with the toms tumbling down as this enhances the dramatics of the monologue, before the chorus of "sweet" and the "aahh's" come out so delicately and just trickle out with amazing beauty. The heavy stabs enter on the upbeat with some intricate guitar picking for more flavour as B-âhwe's vocals reach another stratosphere in the second verse. The trumpet wailing behind her melody is sensational and as her singing becomes more impassioned, you feel like you can hear the pain of the broken relationship and oppression of women come through, adding to a sense of irony in the lyrics of "so sweet" as they linger on at the end.
Despite the confusion expressed in her lyrics, the core take away from the song should be the expression of self-worth and self-love, in spite of the conditions that may make it difficult at times. This message is one that flows through the whole narrative of the upcoming EP; “the blues are made for those who see” - embrace darkness and hardship, and use it to grow.
'Sweet' features on Leeds promoters Super Friendz's compilation Super Friendz Isolation Mixtape Volume 1 that dropped on 6 April, a pay as you feel Bandcamp exclusive of 18 tracks from some of their favourite artists from Leeds and the surrounding area. The donations will be pooled and redistributed back amongst all the featured artists to help them in this uncertain time. This song follows her equally exquisite singles 'Closer' from 2019 and 'Sliding' released earlier this year too, with the former accompanied by remixes from TAMBALA, Breaka and Sah and excellent visual content with an official video published through College Music on YouTube.
B-âhwe is doing an excellent job of tantalising us with these singles, in what will surely be a standout release of the year with the upcoming EP Nuance.
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