You fall back into a plush beanbag chair, in the middle of a dark room, engulfed in a purple-tinged haze. Silhouettes of writhing bodies fill your altered field of vision, to where you can’t discern where limbs begin or end. A bright purple light emanates from one side of the room, and bass vibrates the carpeted ground. You sink further into your cushiony chamber, and multiple bodies crawl in your direction. You are overcome with a sense of euphoria . . .
Restraint is integral to the spirit of r&b. The silence envelops listeners, planting them in an environment filled with whispers and barely perceptible body movements, where every rhythm and tone accentuates the sultry, perspiration-filled atmosphere. The issue with modern r&b is gender-divisive insensitivity, and that’s where things differ with these guys. Sept. 5th is the newest full-length from Canadian trio dvsn, pronounced “division.”
The three components of the group are vocalist Daniel Daley, and prominent Drake collaborators Paul “Nineteen85” Jefferies and Noah “40” Shebib. This collection contains spacious, hard-hitting arrangements inhabited by one of the most compelling r&b singers of this generation. Sex is most certainly on the brain within these songs, but the group honor the carnal act with delicacy, poise, and a rare melodic maturity.
You won’t find the word “bitch” in this lyric sheet; no rappers make emphatic appearances. Sure, this is music coming from a male perspective, but infallible respect for women is maintained throughout, and Daley is joined by multiple female choruses that harmonize and bolster his performances. This is music celebrating the connection between man and woman. If you’re seeking sultry, graceful r&b, this album is for you.
– stasi (@stasisphere)