In her new single “Droughts in the Ocean,” R&B singer Estani brings the focus back to her charismatic lead vocal above all else, delivering what could be one of the best characterizations of neo-soul I’ve had the pleasure of sampling in the last couple of years in the process. Whether we’re looking at the music video for the song or checking out the track on its own, the energy in the material remains the same, with the dexterous lyrical lashings of Estani taking center stage either way. This is a crooner who needs to be getting a lot more attention from the press than she has in the past, and with a release as grand as her latest one, I think she’s going to get that attention and then some.
The instrumentation in this single is very subtle beside the vocal, but not because of the way the mix was produced alone. Instead of trying to compete with an equally epic background element in “Droughts in the Ocean,” Estani is utilizing the blank space on her canvas to spotlight an absence of fear in her performance, which is far better than going off of swagger in her singing alone. This allows for us to appreciate her depth as a vocalist even more than we would have, which is always a plus in the pop genre.
Watch the video for “Droughts in the Ocean” below
Untainted fluidity is the name of the game in the music video for “Droughts in the Ocean,” which features a black and white visual filtration ironically not powerful enough to bleach all of the color out of the passion its stars give here. From the movement of the dancers to the commanding way in which Estani leads us into the chorus so fearlessly, it’s like we’re looking at something so much bigger than the modern music video tends to be, but not in a typically cinematic fashion whatsoever.
I think I speak for a lot of critics and fans around the country right now when I say that I’m very excited to see what happens for Estani next, and given the hype her most recent effort is generating in the American underground at the moment, positive things appear to be sitting on her horizon. There isn’t a set date for the return of live concerts stateside, but when she has the opportunity to get back on the stage I think “Droughts in the Ocean” could easily become a live favorite because of its flexible structure – which, of course, showcases the best this singer has to offer her audience.