Since the release of his first album in 2019, Sault has aroused the admiration of fans of soul, funk and contemporary R&B as much as their curiosity, the identity of the members of the mysterious British collective still being the subject of speculation. His last stroke of brilliance: the 1er last November, he simultaneously launched five new albums as “an offering to God”, all free and available on his website, www.sault.globalprovided that we guess the password giving access to the download, an offer valid for only five days.
At the center of the Sault nebula is composer and producer Dean Josiah Cover, aka Inflo, who has assisted Adele, Jungle, Little Simz and Michael Kiwanuka, among others, in the realization of their musical projects. Who else is part of Sault? Mystery.
It is presumed that singers and rappers Cleo Sol and Kid Sister gravitate to Inflo and have participated in these new albums. Somewhere among these 56 songs, we think we recognize the voice of Anderson .Paak; in any case, it is certainly Little Simz whose voice arises in the middle of the groove soul-jazz and choir orchestrations in Freefrom the album Untitled (God). And no doubt the singer-songwriter Jack Peñate whom we spot, emerging with his voice drowned in the echo of the groove psychedelic soul In the Air from the album 11possibly also the singjay Jamaican Chronixx Elsewhere (on song Glory ?), the two musicians who collaborated on the song Angelwhich Sault unveiled on October 10, just six months after launching theamazing album of orchestral compositions Air.
Spirituality and devotion
This one has a sequel, titled air : microalbum of five symphonic titles, opulent brass and strings, 26 minutes powered by the choir, very cinematic. One imagines a representation of the conquest of the West in the cavalcade of violins and Hiding Moon. For their part, the albums II and Untitled (God) — themes of spirituality and devotion are common to all five albums — bring back that fusion of African-American, soul, jazz, funk, rhythm and blues, and hip-hop genres that Inflo and his colleagues had already mastered on the first four Sault albums, released in 2019 and 2020, and with this distinctive sound palette that turns its nose up at synths in favor of real bass, guitars and percussion, skillfully transformed by studio effects.
It’s all good, expertly crafted, soul inspired, but let’s dwell more on the material from the albums Earth and Today & Tomorrow, which broaden the spectrum of the collective’s musical referents. On Earth, Sault takes popular black American music back to its African roots, with drum patterns from the continent coloring the majority of the pieces. Spiritual afro-jazz, gospel (on the epic The Lord’s With Me) and Afro-Brazilian rhythms (magnificent God Is In Control, sung in Portuguese by who knows who yet) magnify the songs. In contrast, Today & Tomorrow offers a more rock electric funk, bordering on punk (Money), than anything Sault had previously offered. the groove square, the guitar that shows its teeth, somewhere between the minimalist funk of ESG and the punk that groove by The Slits.
These five famous albums will still be offered until November 5th. Listening to them is highly recommended, as is the rest of the discography of this project born in the wake of the Black Lives Matters movement, and which it echoes in its themes and militant remarks. Password: godislove.