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Music Review

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Sounds Like Love (single)


Artist: Illa J
Delicious Vinyl
RRP: £3.99
6 10447 55062 6
Available 21 September 2009

Illa J is back with a second single ‘Sounds Like Love’ featuring Debi Nova from his acclaimed debut album; Yancey Boys.

The track for this song comes from a collection of previously untouched beats produced by the late great James ‘Jay Dee/J Dilla’ Yancey, who of course was Illa J’s brother.

Delicious Vinyl was to release this beat as an instrumental for the world to hear but as soon as Illa J heard the track he knew just what to do with it. As Mike Ross at Delicious Vinyl says: "I knew he’d do it right, it’s in the blood ya know?"

‘Sounds Like Love’ comes with six different versions, all of which come in to their own, some are soulful, some have sensational bass lines yet all have that sophisticated feel.

Up first is the ‘Vocal’ version. It’s slow, soulful and slick, I especially love Illa J’s rapping mixed with the sultry tones of Debi Nova. The love just flows through your veins.

Second is the ‘Instrumental’ version. This time you get to hear the beat and melody stripped from the vocals. This is a cool chill-out track to listen to although I did find myself trying to sing Debi Nova’s part.

The ‘A Cappella’ version is just as cool and melts away your blues. I have always loved A cappella tracks there is just something sexy about them and this one doesn’t disappoint.

‘Nobody’s Unicorn Dub Remix’ has, as you would have thought, a darker feel to the track. This is a really good mix of sounds from the heavy dub bass to the sexy tones of Nova to the rapping tones of Illa J.

The instrumental version of the ‘Nobody’s Unicorn Dub Remix’ isn’t as good as the previous tracks on this single. I feel it really needs the vocals in order to make it what it was. Taken down to its base form it doesn’t really stand good on its own.

The final version ‘Carlos and Miguel Atwood-Ferguson’s In Space Remix’ is certainly not what I expected. It has an almost Japanese garden feel to it with the chirp of the birds and the strings mixed with the sound of the piano. It’s a very emotional version, which I just loved.

Illa J has certainly done his brother proud with this single. A fantastic mix of sounds.


Helena Rea

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Illa J & Debi Nova - Sounds Like Love - EP
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