Tomorrow Jessie Reyez releases her debut album “Before Love Came to Kill Us” that features her second collaboration with Eminem. The New York Times published an early preview of the record with Eminem’s comments on Jessie’s music and personality.
The edition introduces Jessie’s music as something that “though it’s categorized as R&B, pulls together the impulses of folky singer-songwriters and syllable-spitting rappers as well as pop melody and hip-hop impact.
[…] Reyez released her EPs in 2017 and 2018; the second, “Being Human in Public,” was nominated for a Grammy for best urban contemporary album. She also had guest spots on songs by hitmakers like Romeo Santos (singing in Spanish), Calvin Harris and Eminem, who returned the favor by appearing on the new album as the seething but still attached boyfriend in “Coffin,” a lovers’ quarrel infused with mortality that imagines a coffin “handmade for two.” A picture of it appears on the album cover.
Eminem, who discovered Reyez singing “Gatekeeper” [a song that bluntly describes her music business #MeToo encounter with a producer who claimed to be interested in her voice] on late-night television, said he admires both her directness and her craftsmanship. “She sings from her heart,” he said by phone from Detroit. “She’s writing about [expletive] that she’s been through and stuff like that. But it’s not easy to do what she does, and she makes it look so easy.”
He added, “She doesn’t sound like anybody. Her style of singing, the way she enunciates her words and everything, she’s just naturally dope. It seems like she’s not even trying, and she’s that good. Her voice and her cadences don’t sound like anybody I had ever heard before.”
It is interesting that the second Eminem’s release this year is again on the album tightly linked to the topic of death. Jessie Reyez explained to a reporter: “The whole premise of the album was to motivate people to think about their mortality. Now that it’s coming out, at this time, either I’m insensitive or I’m tuned in. It messed me up because I was like, ‘I don’t want to seem insensitive, but this has been my reality for a long time.’ Because that’s just the way I’ve grown up. I’ve grown up thinking about death as something that could easily happen tomorrow. But I know that for everybody else, there’s a lot of fear right now.”
You can read the full review on The New York Tymes website