Laurrhie Brouns – Ascension: Golden Seeds Of Light (Introducing & EP Review)

Ex The Voice of Holland contestant Laurrhie Brouns shows that this is her time to rise.

©Ilse Wolf

Meet upcoming talent Laurrhie Brouns; if you watch the Holland edition of popular TV talent show ‘The Voice’, chances are that name may already be familiar. However, if like me you’re based in the UK – or any other country for that matter – and haven’t even heard Laurrhie’s name before…Well, that’s all about to change.

©Ilse Wolf

The Haitian/Dutch singer-songwriter released her EP, ‘Ascension: Golden Seeds Of Light’, at the tail-end of 2016, having written it herself as well as acting as co-producer and executive producer of the project. Describing her sound as ‘Eurokpop’, Brouns says, “this is a completely new genre that I created myself.” Fusing together elements from all of her influences, including K-Pop, Pop, R&B, Soul and Hip-Hop, she has created something rather distinctive. Brouns also taught herself to read and write Korean in order to successfully incorporate the K into the K-pop aspect of her sound, which can be heard in snippets throughout the EP; something she describes as “forming a musical bridge between the East and West.”

 

 

As soon as you hit play, it’s apparent that ‘Ascension: Golden Seeds Of Light’ has a futuristic, electronic vibe with K-pop accents, drenched in soul. Add in some beat-driven, addictive choruses and an overall uplifting quality, and you’ll get a feel for where this EP is going.

Opening number ‘Taboo’ kicks things off with a lively and fiercely bold feel; Brouns exudes confidence and is extremely unapologetic – and with vocals like these she has every right to be. Switching between her soulful lower register and her chills-inducing higher register effortlessly, it showcases her range brilliantly and sets the tone for the record.

This assertive attitude can also be heard in second track ‘Collective Upgrade’, during which listeners get their first taste of two languages coming together and how those short accents work within the arrangement. Laurrhie’s powerhouse pipes also come out in full force during the chorus – showing the dynamics of her vocals even more so.

‘Rise’ marries a sense of fiery determination with a soulful chorus and inspiring lyrics, while ‘True North’ slows things down a little and plays up the soul. EP closer ‘Astral Plane’ is the mellowest of the bunch, with things getting progressively softer as the record goes on. The piano-led arrangement, coupled with Laurrhie’s vocals, creates a dreamy sound that brings the EP to an end perfectly.

Overall, ‘Ascension: Golden Seeds Of Light’ brings together elements of multiple different genres and blends the sounds together seamlessly – languages and all. The soulful, R&B vocals really compliment the instrumentals whilst having the power to stand out, everything coming together to create something unique with bags of positivity.

Brouns has said that through her original brand of soulful European K-Pop she hopes to “comfort, uplift and inspire”, adding “it is my intention that when you listen to my music it will lift you up…soothe you, bring you joy…move your heart and stir your soul in every way, and activate the evolution of you.”

©YoSoyVideo

As well as the EP, Brouns also has some high-profile performance experience under her belt, including multiple performances at the Amsterdam Arena – in front of 50,000 people, no less – and participating in a club tour across the Netherlands, which saw her share the stage with soulful R&B powerhouse Emeli Sande and Bob Marley’s band The Wailers. In 2012, she also went on to become a contestant on The Voice Of Holland; her powerful rendition of David Guetta’s dance track ‘Without You’ impressing the judges so much that she had her pick of the bunch. During her time in the competition, Brouns’ sensational performances saw her become a favourite among viewers and dubbed ‘the one to watch.’

Alongside this, she has also ventured into other creative avenues; swapping music for the big screen in – Dutch film-maker Lodewicjk Crijns’ 2012 project – ‘Alleen Maar Nette Mensen’ (‘Only Decent People’), in which she played the character of Shandra. Brouns was also accepted into the National Ballett Academy, where she danced in ‘Die Zauberflote’ (The Magic Flute.)

So, what’s next for Laurrhie Brouns? Recently billed by – UK Blog Awards 2017 nominee – Liquid Entertainment Online as their ‘Verge of Stardom’ artist, her talent has been compared to the likes of household names Adele, Beyoncé, and Alicia Keys, but with a unique twist. All of this begs the question: how is she not a mainstream artist, gaining regular radio-play and a well-deserved spot amongst the big names in the industry? I could see her sitting quite comfortably alongside the likes of Emeli Sande – an influence you can hear in her vocals. One thing’s for sure though, I can predict only great things for this amazingly talented lady.

 

Favourite tracks:

Taboo
Rise

 

If you’re curious to hear more of Laurrhie’s distinctive sound, you can keep up to date a number of different ways:

Facebook    Twitter    YouTube    Instagram

As well as through her official Website.

‘Ascension: Golden Seeds Of Light’ is available now from online downloading and streaming services.

 

As always, thank you for reading! If you like what I do here and you want to keep up to date with my upcoming posts, feel free to come and join me on:

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One To Watch: WaltzzUK

“Let’s inspire others to inspire others.” Aspiring rapper sets his sights on spreading positivity.

Waltzz uk

Allow me to introduce you to Waltzz; a young rapper hailing from English countryside town, Ipswich. Currently unsigned, 19 year old Waltzz – real name Liam Stewart – seeks to inspire others through his distinctive brand of hip-hop infused rap music.

His most recent offering ‘Inspire to Inspire’, released at the tail end of 2015, demonstrates this positive outlook. On his official website Waltzz explains: “Inspire to Inspire is about being your best self, no matter what repercussions may occur – being unapologetically you and inspiring others to do the same. Inspire to inspire.”

waltzz UK

The young Brit has been releasing music online since 2013, after premiering his debut offering ‘Heartless EP’; the project’s accompanying visual components saw it receive approximately one thousand plays on the first day alone. Following its success, Waltzz has regularly been posting tracks and music videos, which are also made available for free download via his website. Free music?! Where do we sign up?

As a result Waltzz has a rather large selection of material available for your listening pleasure; five EPs to be precise. Citing influences such as Eminem, Tupac and J.Cole, his music is evocative and fiercely passionate; the majority, if not all, of which is based on real-life situations, making it unashamedly candid. From the relationship he has with his own emotions and his music, to his family and significant other, every song tells a story.

As expected, the sound has evolved over the years. His ‘Wasted Youth’ EP exuding a dark and, at times, ferocious quality in tracks like ‘Any Problems’ and ‘Welcome to my World’ – the latter also giving us a glimpse into Waltzz’s desire to inspire, as he raps “I just wanna be a role model.”

Fast forward to 2015 and ‘Inspire to Inspire’, builds upon that same positivity with more of a pop/R’n’B vibe. The 11 track EP also further showcases Stewart’s flair for writing lyrics, and producing songs with substance. Since the release of I2I, he has also dropped an acoustic version, which sees him strip back a selection of the songs. Armed with nothing but a piano to accompany his vocals, the result is something that feels incredibly intimate. The delicate arrangement draws focus to the lyrics, allowing the raw emotion at play to really impact the listener. This can be heard in intensely poignant, almost cinematic, track ‘Whatever it Takes’, as well as anti-love-song, ‘All Night’.

 

It doesn’t stop there though; the ever hard-working Waltzz currently has yet another EP on the horizon, and began a weekly YouTube series at the beginning of the year to promote the release. Known as ‘I2I Wednesdays’, the thread features everything from “covers, remixes, songs, and freestyles, or anything else WaltzzUK.” Including infectious pop numbers like ‘I Wanna Be Your Lover’, and most recent upload ‘Heat Of The Moment’ – a musical lecture on love in honour of Valentine’s Day, complete with a really fun concept video.

As well as his online performances, Stewart has also racked up live appearances at renowned London venues such as Indigo 2, Hoxton Underbelly and 02 Academy Islington, last year alone.

waltzzUK live

Having really hit the ground running, it looks as though there is no stopping Liam ‘Waltzz’ Stewart and I’m looking forward to seeing what he has in store for the coming months. In his track ‘This Passion’ – taken from his ‘I2I Wednesdays’ series – he raps “this passion’s all I’ve got,” and it shows.


Final Verdict:

Simply put, I really like Waltzz UK. I love the positive nature of his message – encouraging people to be their best self – I think it’s a great attitude to have. Inspire to inspire indeed. The passion he has for his work is undeniable, everything being polished and very professional – from his recordings to his official website. Each track is packed with raw emotion and lyrically demonstrates ingenuity; I’m also a big fan of his piano-based acoustic tracks, as they show a whole different side to his persona.

 

Favourite tracks:

I’m Sorry / Get Some / All Night (Acoustic) / Whatever it Takes (Acoustic) / I Wanna Be Your Lover

 

If you’d like to hear more from Waltzz UK, all of his material is available for free download, or to stream, through his official website. You can also keep up to date with everything on:

Facebook / Twitter / YouTube

For regular updates come and join me on:

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