On a late night #itchysilk listening session the name Echln provides the acoustic elixir.
Kwetsima Maluleke a.k.a Echln was the South African creative providing the musical guile under the cover of a warm darkness. His latest project is the four-track ep Sway. Released on the Singapore based Darker Than Wax label (always guaranteed to bring quality) the four track cut drips with high-quality production.
Echln’s back catalogue is extensive and displays a productive savvy mind, so the quality displayed on Sway is of no surprise. Cuts to coo over from this brilliant producer’s back catalogue-Waiting For You. Released a year ago it featured the smouldering neo soul vocals of Shirah Cheezer. Or how about a more recent cut-Honey? It featured another slamming female vocalist in the shape of Hunter Rose. The track unashamedly references artists and sounds from yester-year. Hunter Rose conjures up images of Erykah Badu or Jill Scott in their pomp, while the beat of the track echoes Aaliyah’s classic and damn sexy Rock The Boat (2002).
Echln’s back catalogue is extensive and displays a productive savvy mind
So, the ep Sway. Echln steps with more gusto into the world of house in this project. The core of the project is soulful, rnb harmonies but at its centre are up-tempo-funky flushes. That funk element particularly evident on Walk Away. It features his muse Shirah Cheezer again. Shirah displays great versatility and takes up the different genre slant with stylish ease. She also features on Dance which certainly has the credentials for a more mainstream audience. The other more mainstream track (it would seem) would be the opener Save. Featuring Vuyo Renene it’s another female vocalist (we sense a common thread here).
Every release has a stand out track or banger and in this project, that would be Feels So Right. It features Hunter Rose (you may remember her!) and Echln’s label mate Belgium producer silo. The result of this triumvirate is a number certainly destined for some swanky exclusive club with clientele sporting airy well-oiled afros and red tinted shades. Incidentally the bass guitar outro is worth its weight in gold.