Managing different musical projects is admittedly a difficult task, especially for established musicians attempting to distance themselves from previous work. Venturing into new sonic territories can often be the deciding factor between success or failure, and Florida-based Egyptian producer and DJ, Batawi, has never been a stranger to experimentation. Look no further than his Vibes series of SoundCloud playlists to see evidence of his prolific production history. Now, with the launch of his JuneO project, Batawil has taken a turn into RnB territory, adding his own vocals into the mix.
As premier track off the as-of-yet unreleased project Stay Curious, Promise U features Batawi's lustful, vocal ballads layered over an energizing beat, originally an instrumental produced by trip-hop heavyweights Massive Attack. Live, hip-hop influenced drums accent luscious piano chords and spacey female background vocals.
Batawi doesn't repeat any lines over the course of the verses in Promise U, and instead delivers an intense love note, clearly directed towards a particular lover. The chorus, one of the more introspective parts of Promise U, has Batawi somberly wondering what his lover thinks of him when they aren't together, and how he misses her all the same.
During the chorus, Batawi modulates his vocals with a deep, subtly emotive layer of autotune, a la Kanye West, that sits beneath a trippy, synth filled breakdown that is one of the highlights of the record.
Aside from following the recent trend of replacing the word "you" with "u" in song titles, Batawi delivers an excellent debut for JuneO, filled with emotional highs and lows alike.