Five years have passed since LYVES’ debut EP, Like Water, but those have not been spent dawdling. Instead, for the past two years, she’s been learning to produce music, honing her craft as a songwriter and producer. The resulting EP, Change, is a dynamic mix of electro-pop, R&B, and soul, her diverse music influence clearly present.
The core strength of LYVES, née Francesca Bergami, is her vocal command — she takes it to high points like on the emotional “Shame,” where she pairs shrieks with her regular, controlled voice to create a hypnotic effect, or barely whispers on the guitar-tinged opener “21 Days.” Change is infused with emotion and heart, the full extent of which is on display on nearly every song. The often-moody production, like on the down-tempo opener, bolsters lyrics like “My body aches / Nobody here to hold me.” Later, though, she warns: “Make no mistake / No fire can contain me.” The song explodes with a killer bassline, showing her ability to transform and explore various styles of song.
She’s reminiscent of powerful voices like Adele and Amy Winehouse on “The System”, a song drenched in sadness but still able to keep its focus. Much like Adele’s recent 30, it’s about the heartache and dissolution of a previous relationship: “We saw a house last month / How could you do this?” she asks. Though, on the title track, we see her at a better place, instances of the relationship still come back to haunt her — how could it not? “Some things have changed inside my head / For better or for worse / You’ve imprinted on my shame.”
Change is an exciting sophomore effort for Bergami — a solid step forward in the combined worlds of alternative R&B, electronic music, and satisfying production that leaves a stamp on your mind. She might have changed, but all signs point to it being for the better.
order Change by Lyves HERE
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