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Ravyn Lenae - Hypnos 2LP

Ravyn Lenae - Hypnos 2LP

Atlantic Records

Regular price $39.98 USD
Regular price Sale price $39.98 USD
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Four years and a move to Los Angeles separated the release of Chicago-born Ravyn Lenae's third EP (2018's Crush, featuring the lauded single "Sticky") and her debut full-length. Her EPs, all of which arrived before she turned 20, displayed an eagerness to jump between styles, including soulful house and jagged synth-funk, and introduced her as a bold personality. Hypnos contains several tracks produced by Monte Booker and Steve Lacy, Lenae's primary collaborators on her EPs, yet the beats as well as her vocals have evolved and matured into something smoother, sweeter, and less erratic. Conversely, her lyrics are sharper and more defiant, as on the irresistible synth pop jam "Venom" or "Mercury," a downright vicious duet with Fousheé. On tracks like "Venom" and the brief, squishy "Higher," Lenae sounds comfortable working with unconventional rhythms and textures, and her voice soars to dream pop heights on ethereal ballads like "Lullabye." Two of the more danceable tracks, the Afrobeats-tinged declaration of independence "M.I.A." and the Kaytranada-produced "Xtasy," are classier and more delicate than "Free Room," the major floor-filler from Lenae's first EP, yet just as strong. "Deep in the World" portrays Lenae as both supernatural and vulnerable, and the amazing "Light Me Up" is equally tender and suggestive. Hypnos has numerous highlights, but it works best as a straight-through listen, especially considering the way it's glued together with a few spoken interludes and similarities between some of the beats and melodies, lending a sense of continuity. Effortlessly cool and emotionally resonant, the stunning Hypnos takes Lenae's craft to a higher plane. -All Music Guide

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