At times impressive but oddly unsatisfying...
'Giants' artwork

The hazy butterfly soul on Andreya Triana's 2010 debut album saw the fledgling singer fluttering her beautiful wings, searching for independence after extensive collaborations with the likes of Flying Lotus and Bonobo.

The decision to enlist producer Matt Hales for second album 'Giants' hints at what she might be after. The Aqualung mastermind recently worked alongside Lianne La Havas and Paloma Faith, as well as penning one of the most addictive – if creepy – ear-worms of our time in his own right.

If it's big pop strides Triana wants, that's where lead single 'Gold' is headed. Feet-marching, jumping keys, the eternally satisfying gospel call-and-response: it's an irresistible strut of retro-R&B that should catapult her to the audience she deserves.

The same goes for the breezy handclaps and sweet, Shirelles-ready harmonies of 'Lullaby' - but sadly that's it for snappy pop hits. The album's other up-tempo jaunts - 'Keep Running' and 'Clutterbug', respectively - risk filler-status as they guide us towards Triana's real skill, the classic piano ballad.

Scoff you may, but it takes a lot to pull a decent one out of the bag. All vintage glamour, build ups and a broken heart, 'Heart In My Hands' is a gorgeous gospel-hymn with Andreya's slow, honeyed husk breaking into a chorus of tear-jerking falsetto redemption.

'Song For A Friend' is equally reverent - bold piano chords and the kind of candlelit vocal delivery that calls for nothing more than a single spotlight. It's a voice to sail away with, crafting some soaring R&B waves and – at times - a sophisticated pop vessel. Just don't hold out for any unexpected adventures.


Words: Kim Hillyard

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