UK soul songstress Joss Stone has been very busy since early last year and we’re sure her hard work will pay off. She embarked on her colossal Total World Tour over a year ago and still has an estimated year and a half to go before she’s scaled all 204 countries on her schedule, all while working on her seventh and latest studio album. With multi-million selling albums, chart-topping tracks, a Grammy among other nominations and the ability to write the heck out of a song, it’s no wonder why Joss has had the fruitful career she’s enjoyed so far. Her new album is called Water For Your Soul and has been heavily influenced by world music and reggae; she worked very closely with Damian Marley when writing/recording the album.
You’ll instantly fall for Love Me with its reggae fuelled vibe and Stone’s all too familiar vocal trill, but the atmosphere changes with This Ain’t Love as the lyrics turn darker and emotional with an earthy arrangement; so far we can tell that we’re in for an experience like few others. Stuck On You leaves the reggae behind in favour of world inspired percussion and a mysterious atmosphere. Stone knows how to shape her listeners’ emotions toward her songs: with this track it’s a feeling of desperation. Stone pleads with us in the lyrics of Star that “we are who we are” and acknowledges the different opinions and beliefs of people out there. The chorus is a wall of voices that drives that message further. The drama escalates with Let Me Breathe as Stone demands to focus on life rather love, Cut The Line has a more lighter feel to it but keeps those emotional lyrics coming. Damian Marley lends his vocals on Wake Up; if Joss was lacking attitude before she makes up for it now.
Haven’t had a song get stuck in your head yet? Don’t worry because Way Oh has got you covered. As you can imagine just looking at the title the hook gets stuck in your head, Stone’s strong belt carries the tune effortlessly. Tracks like Underworld and Molly Town do reggae proud, but then you have Sensimilla where you get a bit of relief from the album’s intensity with some airy vocals and dreamy work with the keyboard, an arrangement sure to relax you. Harry’s Symphony channels reggae again, sampling Inner Circle’s Bad Boys lyrics in the bridge to make it edgy. Continuing on with the feel good vibes and encouragement of stressing less, Clean Water soothes your soul and allows you to take in some good advice to “let the sunshine in, don’t waste your day”. Last, but not least, lead single The Answer delves deeper into the album’s world influence and touches on the little every day stresses of the average human being: just let go people!
Joss Stone manages to surprise listeners with every album release. Water For Your Soul retains your attention from beginning to end with its multiple genre influence and inspiring/relatable lyrics. You’ll be stressing less and living more, especially if you keep this album on repeat for a few weeks, which fans of Stone will do without a doubt. This girl has always had a significant musical talent, but she continues to impress and move you with her songwriting capabilities and that voice of hers is just phenomenal. Stone is still on tour around the world: our recommendation would be to catch her live on stage if you can. Water For Your Soul was an eye opening listen but we can’t begin to imagine what it would sound like on stage. Thanks for your inspiration Joss!