One of our favorite new releases this year, Duval Timothy’s Help is a powerful narrative journey navigating through the the trenches of the music industry, self-help videos, and healing through community. Recorded in Los Angeles and London, the album features an all-star cast of collaborators including Rodaidh McDonald (King Krule, The XX), Marta Salogni (Bjork), Lil Silva, Melanie Faye, Vegyn, Desta Haile, Mr Mitch, Dave Okumo, and Twin Shadow amongst others. The compositions largely center around Timothy’s emotive piano motifs and lie in a sort of minimalist electronic jazz zone though many other influences and genres are mixed in including R&B, pop, ambient, bass, and gospel. Vocal samples are utilized throughout, with one of the most powerful appearing on “Slave” which features a sample of Pharrell Williams discussing the master/slave dynamic of the music industry while a “Slave” refrain is sung in the background. Listening to the album feels like a form of healing, moving from the A3 sentiment “Everyone wants to believe that it’ll all work out, and I don’t believe that it does” to C3’s “it’s hard to say what it means, except what you feel…if you investigate enough, everything becomes abstract.” It’s hard to say just where Timothy lands by the final track of the album, but the healing clearly comes through the journey itself.
– Phil Cho
Recommended – Full Listen
Tags: Abstract / Ambient / Gospel / Narrative / Now Sound / Piano / R&B