Seal Party Drops “Maison”

The upper Midwestern soul tradition is nothing new, but you would never be able to guess as much just going off of the potent delivery offered by Seal Party in their enticing new single “Maison.” Crafted out of a soul harmony that is undeniably the main focus of the track, “Maison” doesn’t move too fast on its feet, but it doesn’t want to get us in rhythm with its content that way. Some songs are all about pace whereas this one is about feeling, and it’s getting the attention of critics quite rightly this June.

The blue hue on these harmonies is impossible for me to ignore as a critic, and as a fan, it was something I couldn’t help but notice right out of the gate. Instead of this being pure soul, there’s a cathartic – and yet equally taxing – blues component buried in the flesh of this composition, and it’s all the more striking when you’ve got someone like K-Seal singing to us. His voice has a lot of raw passion in it, and there’s ever a moment in this performance in which he isn’t going to give us everything we’re able to handle.

This bass should have been just a bit bolder than it is in this setting, but a lacking bassline really isn’t all that bad an issue to have, compared to what a lot of other songs have been featuring over the last season or so. Seal Party don’t have to worry about structural issues here, just the cosmetic, and as someone who prefers a band that at least knows their way around a creative concept, I think it’s pretty good that things ended up turning out the way that they did for “Maison.” The spirit of the single is ace, and that’s the key thing here.

Influenced heavily by the likes of Tom Waits and Wilson Pickett the same, Seal Party’s sound is an interesting find for sure, and if you like the soulful part of pop music when it’s removed from the elements that often win it commercial favor, this is a song that you need to be listening to right now. Seal Party have a crazy handle, but they’re very focused in this performance. There’s nothing to scoff at in the way they’re able to express something big to their listeners, and “Maison” puts us in the front row for the best their debut LP MMXXII has to offer.

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