New York’s own Aisha Badru releases her latest EP, ‘Transcendence’. A stripped back and elegant affair, the EP serves to shine a light on Badru’s frustrations with the modern world and tackles the issues surrounding the youth of today.
Perhaps the best encapsulation of the overall themes and presentations within the album is the opener, ‘Millennial’. Here, Badru selects to tackle the issues that surround the titular millennial generation. Subjects such as minimum wage jobs and over-priced rent payments are tackled whilst still maintaining a sense of youthful optimism that never quite falters. This heavy subject matter is accompanied by an elegant guitar beat that serves to emphasise the words. Following this is, ‘Forest Green’. This continues the sense of melancholy that accompanies the EP’s opener. Only this time, discussing the tribulations that come with the modern-day concrete jungle, clearly inspired by Badru’s hometown of Yonkers, New York.
‘Water’ tells the tale of change and being free to explore new ventures. The melody of the track builds throughout its duration, giving a sense weight and further demonstrating the sense of change and growth in life. It must be said that the track lacks a crescendo that is needed in-order to give weight to the melodic growth. However, the track maintains enough of its tender intent to more than hold its own.
The tender subject matters that permiate are continued within, ‘Love Doesn’t Fade’. Within this tale of love and hope, Badru blends together guitar and piano, with the grandiose nature of the later creates an elegance that mixes beautifully with the almost poetic lyrical tones.
Closing out the EP is single, ‘The Soils Daughter’. This marks a return to the EP’s to an overtly politicised theme. Within this track the selected subject matter is global warming and the change within the environment. It serves to be a well-crafted summary of these changes and is as beautifully put together as any other track on the EP.
Transcendence serves to blend undeniably political themes with an elegant backing that is only usually reserved for the most tender of love songs. This isn’t to say that she shy’s away from the more personal moments that explore her own heart. It is an expert example on how to make a political statement that is made to be enjoyed as a work of music as well providing an expertly aimed message.