If you ever heard Karen Gibson Roc singing, you know about the jaw-dropping effect her voice and her way of performing has. This lady got style, she got spirit and an enormous portion of love to share. This chick has the gift. Her new album “The cool of the day” is eagerly awaited. The gap of 4 years, since her highly valued debut called “Touching the soul” got released, was filled with nothing less than the challenge of motherhood. But the flow of rhyme didn’t stop, it got even more inspirational through this little being growing up beside her. When Karen sings “I find my destiny in poetry” she is revealing her inner most being. Poetry is an essential of her life. It is an urge, an unstoppable force like a wellspring, that never runs dry. Therefore it appears simply logical, that the Jamaican-born lady calls her music “spoken word performance poetry music”.
Karen’s background beats range from Lounge music to Acid Jazz and so many variants in between. To bring this idea to life, inquiries of different producers asking for collaboration were very welcome during the process of the new album. Even though the album is floating along organically, each track is adding new aspects with variations in instrumentation and style. Mats Samuelson of Glam Sam and his Combo from Sweden flavoured his productions with bits of Soul & Funk. The Lemongrassmusic masterminds Roland & Daniel Voss contributed 3 tracks. They do what already worked very well in past collaborations by focusing on melodic Downtempo grooves, leaving space for Karen’s voice to captivate us with her grace. Another 3 outstanding productions come from Nadjib aka DJ Boulaone of BanBella Jazz, widening the boundaries of what modern NuJazz means. On “Wake up” he throws in a very cool scratchy groove, which Massive Attack would be proud of. Johannes Huppertz aka Newton is contributing two productions. One is the beautiful ballad “Destiny in poetry”. Also Karen’s old buddy DJ Hen Boggie has joined once again. Not to forget iëlo from France with a laidback tune, helping to turn “The cool of the day” into a beautiful amalgam. Both live instrumentation and samples got used by all producers, giving the album an organic, soulful appeal. Karen Gibson Roc’s “The cool of the day” sounds fresh and inspiring but at the same time it is evoking the golden age of Acid Jazz with Jazzmatazz, US3, Galliano, Urban Species and others.
“Don’t you wanna know who you really are?” is the refrain of “From the inside”. It is a question, Karen keeps having a focus on for herself. Day by day it is her mantra. It is an expression of her spiritual approach ever-present in her lyrics. Reflecting herself, the meaning of god and being true down to the bottom of her heart. Good to leave you -while listening- with Karen’s liner notes: “I hope this quiet yet powerful album finds its way into the hearts of those who crave something interesting to listen to. At times I strayed from my comfort zone to places that made me take a look at who I am as a human being on this journey through life. I used my voice in new ways and tiptoed into melodic places. The musicality of the work shines through and I am grateful to have found myself in great company.”
Digital Release Date: September 21st 2012
Catalogue number: LGM 105-4
Label: Lemongrassmusic – LC 12644