Anjali Ray returns with Giant, and it’s an EP with more music to write home about than some with several more songs can’t even come close to when it comes to consistency from front to back. This Chicago born singer can do no wrong with her combined singing and piano-playing talents, as well as how growing up in India influences her sound. The fact that this EP only contains five tracks is one of the most elusive things about it, because it has the impact of a full-length album release with each track carrying the same amount of musical and vocal weight for an evenly mixed, perfectly balanced EP.
With the first two tracks playing so well together in complete contrast like they do, it sets the tone for what is ultimately a sonic treat to the appreciative and dedicated pop music lovers. And the difference is, it’s complete with jazz school piano and vocal stylings, which is what “Different Side Of Me” is all about. This almost reminds of classic singers like Branda Lee, but then it grows into a sweet pop track that you can’t help but love. It even has that same impression when it comes to her voice in general. It’s as fun as it is serious on this delightful pop cut.
“Giant” is the one of the strongest tracks, as the title usually indicates but doesn’t always deliver. However, all checks out as should on this march through Pershing Square that offers up the feel of doing exactly that. It’s a journey of sorts that just works in every way, shape and form. It’s no secret by the time you hear it, that it belongs to the EP as the magnum opus it is. This shows an effort to blend the music and vocals together for an overall even showing of both which Ray is so good for. But even more can be said about all the songs on this pop and slightly jazz heavy EP collection.
“Marionette” follows back to more of the same fashion as the opener, with some stripped back factors to set them apart. This is mostly Ray’s voice doing what it does best, but there are some tasty lyrics and musical passages that put it up there with the others on-the whole Giant record. The piano flurries are what make this musically interesting behind some tribal drums that also keep it interesting for variety sakes. But these tracks all contain something widely different on the flip side of the musical coin. And that is what helps set Ray apart from the average pop singer of the day.
The EP is taken out with another fine composition on “Where’s The Heart” which is properly placed at the end to make the deepest impression possible, leaving you pretty-much battered and begging for more of the same as it blinds you with inspiration like any great singer of this caliber that you can’t forget once you hear. Giant is one of those EP’s that play much bigger than five songs normally do, with each track itself being worth more than the price of admission Anjali Ray offers her angelic and second to none writing to.
Trevor Young approved by Michael Rand