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The most striking thing about Sampha has always been that voice. It's soul-wrenchingly beautiful. The kind of effortless, wavering tone that pulls at heart-strings, making each word brim over with emotion. It's stood out in his releases alongside SBTRKT, his previous EP for Young Turks back in 2010, and his gorgeous collaboration with Jessie Ware, 'Valentine'. On 'Dual', that voice is equalled by his production work and the result is nothing short of magical.
Opening short sketch 'Demons' crackles backed up by a steady gospel-tinged stomp, languid, expressive strains of piano tinkling. Immediately this seems a whole lot more masterful than anything he has done before. 'Beneath The Trees' is golden, lo-fi pop at its best, swelling instrumentation adding poignancy to his bare vocals. 'Indecision' is bigger again, waves of piano and that voice, completely arresting as always. As the final yearning strains of 'Can't Get Close' come to an end it's hard not to feel overcome. 'Dual' is an exceptional release. A dizzy mix of heart-on-sleeve pop, and lots and lots of soul to hold near and dear.