“It’s the last time I’ll speak on it
‘Cause you ain’t that important
It’s the last time I’ll sing about you
You search for me in every woman you see
I know for a fact I ain’t coming back
She can’t love you like me, no
No more late nights
No more late nights, no, I’m done with that
Won’t you come back, hey” Njoy
Njoy, off of Snoh Aalegra‘s sophomore album, titled “Ugh, Those Feelings Again”, might be a (highly addictive and incredibly marvelous) simple interlude in the project. However, it does sum up the main feeling expressed in Snoh Aalegra’s new body of work.
As you go through the album, you’ll get stuck between love and loss, make-ups and break-ups, undecided, between the mind and the body. Caught in this situationship, she confesses her weaknesses and much she’s still in love, quite like her friend Eryn Allen Kane (though this is another story).
As such, here she is, stressed and helpless, as Snoh sighs and says “Ugh, Those Feelings Again“.
Her branding and imagery is very well executed. It is indeed thought to express all of these sensations in just one picture. Before you listen to the album, you can tell what’s the album will sound like.
From, Don’t Explain EP to FEELS, we usually get a vintage kind of drawing as Snoh Aalegra’s portrait, or rather Snoh’s cinematic character. For Ugh, Those Feelings Again, this is the first time she offers an actual photograph of her face. She keeps the cinematic aspect by adding subtitles like these old though timeless movies you would watch over and over again.
The black and white cover suggests something as painful as beautiful at the same time. These shades of grey indicate a kind of emotional aenesthesia. Used to living these sad love stories, she’s blasé, unimpressed, in a way.
What is more, watching this cover, you’d expect to experiment something smooth, delicate and soothing. Quite like Sade, the UK icon of smooth jazz.
Since her early beginnings, Snoh vows an unconditional admiration for Sade. She even did a cover back in 2010, for her debut studio album, First Sign, which features a cover of the 1984 song “Smooth Operator” by Sade.
With new album, this is the time for Snoh Aalegra to demonstrate at its best how much Sade has inspired her artistry, from the music, to the passion for fashion, and even the hairstyle.
Iranian Snoh Aalegra traveled all around the world, from Sweden, to Los Angeles, and finally released her latest project in London, after having signed at AWAL label.
Closer to her idol, Sade, who’s a music icon based in London – coincidence, perhaps, but still.
Talking about London, quite like Londoner R&B vocalist Cherri V, Snoh Aalegra addresses the Situationship dilemna.
I forget about the issues, oh (I keep forgetting now)
Too many times you and I made love in my mind (yeah)
The truth is that I miss you, no way I can forget you now, no
(I don’t mean to baby)
Go on and confuse you (no)
I know I’m confusing now”
By the way, the “I don’t mean to” could recall these same feels, nostalgic and bittersweet as ever expressed in Jhene Aiko’s chorus in The Worst, when she sings “I don’t mean to, I don’t mean to, I don’t mean to, I don’t mean to, But I love you“… Any listener, fan of these two R&B singers would definitely be experimenting those feelings again.
Finally, you can appreciate, once more, the evolution since Don’t Explain released back in 2016. Indeed, she makes her wink to her day-one fans by releasing a Charleville 9200 Part II.
How we go from favorites to being complete strangers?
Part I ends up with a laid-back and stripped-down instrumental. The songwriting for the Part II follows this ethereal type of mood, with no drums. The music feels like floating out of love. Sounds like two hearts in the night have just stopped beating for each other – once together, now strangers.
When Part I was all about the promise of an unconditional love. Part II cries the end of a romance supposed to be forever. Like Jazmin Sullivan sings it, “Forever Don’t Last“.
Say, do you remember?
Back when shit was good?
Two kids in the night
We were so alive
Over time I realized, yeah, I realized
It was all a lie
In conclusion, Ugh Those Feelings Again is Snoh Aalegra’s greatest record. It stands for her artistic achievement.
She’s able to give tribute to her personal inspirations (Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones, Billie Holiday, Sade…). She matured stunning vocal techniques, owning a smooth attitude, and keeping it Hip-Hop – Snoh Aalegra is, indeed, the perfect voice to sample for a beat. And her voice has been sampled before, by Drake for his track Don’t Disturb, of off MORE LIFE album, using the topline for Time.