Powerful, impactful, heartbreaking, haunting, painful and wrenching. That’s how music feels when it really hits your soul and that’s exactly what rising singer/songwriter Jacob Banks did on his highly-anticipated debut album, Village, which was initially released nearly two months ago.
The title of the album coming from the famous phrase, “It takes a village to raise a child.” That’s exactly what happened with the Nigerian-born and British-bred singer too, who shows throughout the album how many different influences he had to make him the very talented artist that he’s and one to really watch for making an even bigger impact breakout year here in 2019.
Banks, whose very baritone powerful, yet smooth voice really stands out and will remind you of soul legend James Brown with how powerful baritone it’s, knows how to really make an epic introduction too. As the very powerful guitar-driven opening record, Chainsmoking, which he initially released almost a full year earlier finds him singing about the cost of love in such an impactful way where you can hear the pain in his lyrics, as he sings it. Banks also finds a way to make that pain rhythmic to the point you could still feel the pain in his very poetic lyrics. Most notably on the very next record, Love Ain’t Enough.
It’s rare nowadays to find an album where you can play the whole thing through and virtually every record is so impactful that it makes it hard to pick a clear cut favorite. Village is an album that has such depth to it though, that the more you play it, the more you change your mind on what is your favorite track.
Whether it be the very pain evoking grief of watching children grow up and not wanting them to because of the harsh realities they will encounter in the world on, Slow Up or the very piano-laden keys on Kumbaya. A very memorable duet with fellow still rising great singer/songwriter Bibi Bourelly about the memories of a long-lost love that still remains and you can’t quite forget even despite the painful memories from it.
Those along with the very playful, Prosecco, which is Banks biggest record to date, Be Good To Me, Caroline, and Unknown (To You), are currently among my personal favorites. The very playful Prosecco, even having the singer giving such playfully poetic lyrics as, “You treat me like Obama. I barely know you, you want me to meet your mama. And I know that you’ve the praying for Nirvana. That Prosecco done got you feelin’ like Rihanna.” While the very soulful heavenly church-like, Caroline, has Banks so emotionally singing with his heaven-like vocals on the record about a love as sweet as Caroline.
Be Good To Me, a very powerful duet with Swedish singer Seinabo Sey, that has a very well-placed standout guest verse from Sey. A truly beautiful record that with its modern hyper-extended and rootsy backdrop is perfect to hear the hauntingly fearful and vulnerable lyrics both singers sing on the record.
Meanwhile records like the very sultry, Witness, that’s one of those songs that will have you turn down the lights to ask your lady to dance or make love to and the very happy African-themed joyous, Keeps Me Going, with its very palpably African in inspiration, shows the strong mix of several villages it took to raise Banks. All several miles apart from one another.
The very powerful and impactfully painful, Unknown (To You), with its very emotional lyrics you can really feel hit your soul and possibly even move you to tears with how powerfully emotional it’s is such a great record too. That’s one of those records where you can really feel it in your soul how much he evokes such genuine emotion that truly touches and captures anybody who listens to it own emotions in a way that’s so impactful and powerful.
With this album, Banks truly gives one of those very powerfully impactful rawness of modern soul records that’s needed in music right now to help everyone get through such a truly trying time in the world right now. The impact of this album sure to touch many generations to come and just the start of what has the makings to be a truly impactul career for the very talented singer and songwriter.