Emmanuel- D’lllusions of Grandeur

January 7th, 2006

An album by a producer with such an impressive CV of material was always going to be a classy affair, and that this is, with guest appearances from impressive names such as KRS One, Braintax, Terri Walker, Mystro and many more. The sixteen tracks here, provide a healthy variety of approaches to beat making and atmosphere painting.

The opening track 'My Thing!!' by living legend KRS One is a really chilled hiphop affair, whilst 'Pretend' by Nate James offers some very lush soul vibes. 'Getaway' featuring vocals by Celetia Martin and 'Bubblebath' sung by Daniel Debourg and Dyanna Fearon showcase polished and mature romance orientated R'n'B whilst 'Let's Go Away' continues the love focused subject matter with another slow and chilled experience rapped over by UK hiphop top dog Braintax.

'Quicksand' and 'Morning Blues' share a lot of similarities in production which doen't provide for great playback value, however 'Heat' rapped by Mystro, fully makes up for that with a lot more harder sounds and energetic vocals than earlier moments of the album. 'Flirtin' sung by the great voice of Terri Walker is more than enough persuasion for those not familiar with the singer, to seek out her material, and 'Right Here' by Belle builds up really gradually to create a simple but beautiful four minutes of straight forward soul.

The album ends with 'Proof' by Sandra Escoffery and the instrumental 'Still Working'. 'Proof' is a very slow tempo number with a hint of jazz about the vocals. It's perfect baby making music with some spot on choices of drums for its loop. The instrumental is a touching finish to the album, combining various sound bites and bits of music across two minutes which suitably provide a sense of closure to the release as a whole.

Many people will be familiar with Emmanuel's preview work, often under his alias C-Swing. He's worked a lot with successful names ranging from the UK's Jamelia to the US's Mary J Blidge, D'Angelo and Wyclef to name just a few. Some heads may therefore be expecting a quite commercial collection of tracks here, along the same lines as 'Do It' and 'Feel Me' which the producer provided for UK rapper Doc Brown, but that isn't the case. This is a very musical and mature outing which provides windows into many flavours and moods that Emmanuel is very capable of cooking. This is a perfect album to put on to unwind to, with several more energetic numbers to get up on your feet for.