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Album Review: dvsn – Morning After

2 min read
photo: lesean-harris

With the release of their début album, Sept. 5th, nearly a year and a half ago, Canadian duo dvsn – pronounced ‘division’ – stepped out from behind the veil of anonymity that had surrounded them since they started dropping singles in 2015.  Revealed to be producer Paul Jefferies – who is known professionally as Nineteen85 and is most famous for his work with Drake, to whose OVO Sound label dvsn is signed – and vocalist Daniel Daley, the pair made waves with their alternative R&B sound. With their sophomore album, Morning After, Jefferies and Daley continue with their distinctive sound sans some of the edge.

So far dvsn have released three singles from the album, Think About Me, Don’t Choose, and Mood, which stand as roughly indicative of Morning After as a whole – that is to say, good but not great. Apart from an awkwardly drawn-out delivery at the start, Daley’s vocals are in fine form on Think About Me, while Don’t Choose mixes a melodic loop reminiscent of a music-box with a solid breakbeat to interesting effect. Mood establishes a laid-back atmosphere musically, which may be maintained or broken by Daley’s falsetto depending on preference, but fails to offer up anything especially memorable.

Run Away opens the record with a minimal and moody musicality, with Daley fully utilising his vocal from airy falsetto to emotive full-throated delivery, for a succinct but satisfying two-and-a-half minutes. Presented as a single track due to the common narrative thread, Nuh Time / Tek Time features distinct sounds for its two sections, with the shift probably jarring enough to justify the parts being presented as separate songs. The eponymous Morning After ups the musical energy while remaining restrained, while Conversation in a Diner uses atmospherics to close the album. Overall, Morning After is a consistent, if uneventful record.