• WAEVZ AU

South-West Sydney artist and producer i.amsolo explores heartbreak on debut EP 'i'

Updated: Nov 11, 2021


Initial Thoughts

Hailing from South-West Sydney, multi-talented producer and artist i.amsolo has released his official debut EP entitled ‘i’. Solo has been releasing music under the alias ‘i.amsolo’ for over 2 years now, and through doing so, has ushered in a unique, futuristic and electronic approach to contemporary R&B that has caught the attention of local and global listeners.


As a producer, Solo’s tireless work and technical nous has been heard across multiple groundbreaking projects throughout the Australian scene in the last few years. Without a doubt, Solo has been critical in enhancing the production on many of the hits that we have come to know and love today. It has been exciting to see Solo undergo his own intimate and independent artistic journey, and to see this project come to life has without a doubt meant another immense project has been added to what has already been a fantastic year of releases.



Song Breakdown


Enter

The first track off of this project foreshadows many of the themes and concepts to come. Entitled ‘Enter’, the track is a short instrumental-based song where Solo uses multiple techniques to establish the energy of the overall EP from the outset. The use of a sound akin to a thumping heartbeat alludes to the project coming to life. This heartbeat steadily speeds up throughout track, illustrating the motions of our elevated vitals when we are affected by love and heartbreak. And Solo’s distinctive distorted sounds and otherworldly energy is embraced immediately from the opening track. A robotic sound at the track’s outro says ‘Enter’, marking the beginning of a journey.


Trauma

Solo has strategically placed ‘Trauma’ at second on the track list due to it being a reflection of the first stage of heartbreak. Thematically, Solo is recalling a debilitating past experience where he was left behind by a significant other, with the melancholic production allowing him to incorporate many vocal elements such as humming and vocal-layering to portray the hurt he is still reeling from. In addition, Solo displays a perfect use of autotune to contrast the production; a fast-paced looped instrumental where he slows down his vocals to emphasise a traumatic experience. The illuminating outro gives us a taste of the elite level of production we are expected to see throughout the project.


Cold Ft. Blessed

I think it’s safe to say that ‘Cold’ is one of the strongest collaborations to grace the Australian scene this year. And BLESSED and Solo both represent the South West and Western Sydney superbly from the very beginning of this track. BLESSED’s humming combines exquisitely in tandem with Solo’s captivating hook, ultimately making for an expertly-crafted transcending listening experience throughout the track. The message is clear – everything feels cold, stagnant and lifeless after the dissolution of this relationship. There is frustration and anger, despite knowing karma will do its work. BLESSED offers a clean flow throughout his verse, repeating the last word in each line to make it catchy and to place emphasis on the message. The outros are always on point, and on ‘Cold’ the amalgamation of electronic instrumentals and Solo’s echoey ephemeral vocals makes for something special.



Process

The robotic message at the start of the track highlights the midway point of the project and arguably, one of the hardest stages of heartbreak; processing what has happened and coming to terms with it all. This is Solo’s message to his significant other, it is his moment to be completely unfiltered and he wears his heart on his sleeve. It is evident that this relationship left him resentful and the process can be confusing but Solo reaffirms the importance of moving on past this indifference and pain. The track contains frenzied yet cohesive production, with a speedy, glitch-like effect taking shape at the start and then an adjusted, more rounded loop coming in as the track goes on. The slower melodic vocal approach from Solo is unmatched throughout the track. The triumphant and glorious outro shines on the notion that invariably there is a light at the end of the tunnel.


Reminisce

When you experience heartbreak, it is inevitable to want to reminisce and to remember all of the good times you had with the person that you lost. This brings us to one of the hardest stages in experiencing a break-up as your mind wanders and in Solo’s case, this is a moment of vulnerability as he admits to feeling a sense of guilt for still possessing those feelings of love. He is trying to express his lingering feelings even if it’s in vain as his memories are filled with this person and they hit him to his very core; “The truth is that my heart still bleeds for you”. A reverbed version of the hook towards the end of the track resonates with the listener and to some degree emulates the sound of a voicemail, acting as a final message sent to his ex-lover.


Afraid of Love

I have been waiting a whole year for this song to drop on streaming services. Solo released this song on YouTube in October last year with an incredible accompanying visualiser shot by SONDR Films. Heartbreaks and hurtful past experiences teach us many lessons, but can also leave us conditioned by many insecurities, and one of them is the fear of loving again. This is a powerful song where Solo stresses his fear of loving again due to the overwhelming tension that love has brought him in the past. ‘Afraid of Love’ is a track that many listeners will resonate with on multiple levels. And it does not pertain to romantic relationships only, but to every time you have been hurt by somebody that you have loved. The production once again is flawless, with the soothing synth loops, booming drums and bass matching seamlessly with the dreamy instrumentals, speaking to a dichotomy in Solo’s thinking.



Exit (let it go)

Acceptance and moving on is the final phase of heartbreak and the final track on this EP alludes to just that. This track breathes production excellence and cements Solo as one of the most advanced producers in the current Australian scene. As the production enters a higher echelon, Solo samples other tracks on the EP as a reflection on his journey to this point whilst escalating the presence of some gorgeous instrumentals. The automated voice towards the end indicates to some kind of coordinates that are not understood by the listener and is something that they are left to figure out. Frenetic energy ceases and calms as the track concludes, almost to signal a coming to terms with what’s occurred. “She ain’t worth it, let it go” Solo surmises.


Final Thoughts

This a wonderfully interconnected project which emulates the stages of heartbreak through excellent production that is paired with a futuristic Dark R&B approach. Solo has managed to create an unforgettable experience for the listener, and has forged a project that will ensure you remember exactly where you were when you first heard it. Solo has been known for his multi-faceted talents in music production and singing for many years now, and this debut EP highlights his forward-thinking approach to breaking barriers within sound experimentation and he has absolutely smashed it.


Solo has created an immense listening experience through a very unique approach to modern R&B. The futuristic, electronic and dark sound that is prevalent throughout this whole project is something that we have not come across in the Australian scene just yet and we believe will act as an inspiration to many up-and-coming artists and producers to become more in tune with their approach and delivery. This project will not just age well, it will be the foundation for a new subgenre of R&B that we can expect to see become huge amongst a range of listeners.


Production by i.amsolo

Photos by Nikhil Ninan (@nikhil.ninan)

EP Cover Art work by Jiyad Mohammed (@jiyadmohammed)


Words by Maroun Ghossain and Matthew Badrov