Nashville via New York alt/pop songstress Sinclair possesses an impressive musical pedigree that has had a clear impact on her pop song writing. Her background in classical guitar, which has seen Sinclair win numerous accolades, has provided the artist with a repertory of musical devices for wonderful melodic writing. The lesbian daughter of a pastor, Sinclair reveals narratives of self-discovery, love, courage and independence, united by her constant pursuit of optimism in her debut EP Sweet Talk. Combined with her undeniable musical talent, Sweet Talk makes for a compelling and infectious debut, alive with irresistible pop that resonates and boasts a confidence that reads like a seasoned recording artist.
The charming debut leads with Holla, showcasing Sinclair’s capacity for simple, yet beautiful and effective melodic writing. Fingerpicked countermelodies in the guitar weave in and out of the track, sometimes reminiscent of her classical background, and at others betraying a clear Nashville influence. Male backing vocals compliment Sinclair’s pure vocal tone, as the track is expertly layered to create intensity and interest. The EP continues with the energetic The World Is Ours, whose penetrating beats accompany a soaring narrative of undeniable true love; the personal track was written about Sinclair’s now wife Natalie. The slight Sprechstimme quality of the verse adds to its real-life appeal, while the highly personal track invites intimate participation with a synthesised counter melody, percussive clapping and added vocal harmonies, transforming the serenade into an anthem.
Sinclair then takes us to the dance floor with the EP’s title track. Sweet Talk is an empowering assertion of independence and self-liberation. Accompanied by sweeping strings and insistent beats, she asserts with bucket loads of attitude: I won’t let you sweet talk me back to that place. This Too Shall Pass provides a lovely change of pace. The track is slow and contemplating, without entering the realm of melodrama and miserable theatrics, offering pockets of wonderful poetry like “slow dancing with my regret… Out of the rain but still wet”. The somewhat formulaic melody of the verses, however, feels slightly out of place against the stunning electric guitar, and vocals of the chorus and pre-chorus.
Sinclair switches up her instrument of choice on the piano-based closer Heaven On Earth. It’s the perfect choice to end the EP, demonstrating a musical versatility after establishing her palpable talent for guitar-based performance and composition. Sweet Talk is a refreshing addition to the domain of female pop artists. Grounded in a solid musical education and classical background, Sinclair engages in great pop song writing that feels and sounds genuine.