These days, it seems anyone can make an R&B track. However, recording a soul track takes that special intangible element. If Pepper didn’t exist, someone would have to invent her. Frighteningly talented, incredibly photogenic and blessed with a remarkable voice, she just happens to be very good at what she does. Pepper is a vocalist and R&B/soul artist from Toronto, Canada. Her childhood spent singing in the church led her to her current career and sound. Hope and positivity are the cornerstones of her creativity, which she weaves into her music. Influenced by gospel, soul, R&B and hip hop, Pepper is poised to win over millions of new fans with her heartfelt songs. Her debut album is set for release in 2019.
Spunky, fresh, and forward, Pepper delivers an excellent effort that finds this gifted vocalist stepping out just enough to make a big difference in her career. Sounding great and building on her vast potential it’s a winner from note one. In fact if you didn’t see her picture you would think she is a black soul sister.
On her latest single, “One Step Closer to Home”, the singer wraps her gritty vocals around the from-the-gut melody, as she channels as a pitch-perfect blend of Aretha Franklin and Janis Joplin. She proves to be both an innate interpreter of lyrics and someone who reaches for new heights with every note.
Like great fashion that never goes out of style, a great song depends on the singer’s ability to inject it with passion and meaning. Pepper achieves that and more, literally making this track come alive, and leaving the listener breathless from time to time with pure power and undeniable depth.
The mix of brooding layered sounds, a rhythm paced to meaning, and that great soulful voice of Pepper are the true magic of this track. While I typically immerse myself in any music I review, I’ve probably listened to this one at least a couple dozen times.
Each stanza, every turn of phrase and each lilt of guitar or punch of drum comes together to give a soulfulness and nuance to the music that allows us to continually uncover more. What Pepper offers the listener is a complete songstress, not a booty-thumping wannabe diva from a music video, and not a bland archetype.
Pepper’s thoughts, ideals and philosophies spring to life through her music and voice. She bares her mistakes, and shares her victories. These spiritual and existential adventures and misadventures formulate the foundation of “One Step Closer to Home”. Indeed, most of what the singer puts down here feels raw and heartfelt.
She draws on her natural talent, covering the beat and soundscape with emotional lyricism spawning a heartfelt subject in need of deep exploration. The track lets Pepper balance her purring sensuality with more forceful, intrusive tones. With intrepid artistic flexibility, and a bottomless love for her craft, she proves to be a stunning performer.