Veteran producer S-X allows his artistry to take centre stage on new release ‘A Repeat Wouldn’t Go A Miss’. The musical production and mix quality on this whole project are immaculate, showing how involved S-X is in the technical side of music; alongside this, though, he shows that he is able to present more than just exquisite production and mixing, allowing his delivery to emphatically shine through.
His versatility is evident through, as his vocal range in ‘Same Old Story’ and ‘Pick Up The Phone’ – just to name a couple – allude to the presence of multiple acts on a single track. Indeed, his performances leave the lasting impression of S-X’s capabilities as an artist and breaking any boundary of expectation placed upon him. Especially since it completely makes you forget that this project has no features!
‘Loopholes’ is another song that showcases the range in which S-X delivers his vocals; the title is perhaps fitting, with the artist finding “holes” in the production and allowing his voice to fill the pockets in such a melodic fashion that it leaves you wondering why S-X has not been on your radar previously, as an artist or a producer.
There are tinges of The Weeknd’s own style in S-X’s songs, you can grasp on these in ‘Pick Up The Phone’ and ‘Clear Out Time’, with his attention to emotional resilience lyrically and through the way his vocal resonates throughout the track. This is not to say that it is a negative, rather he takes the inspiration and creates his own direction through it, with S-X using his vocal range to his advantage on dark-ambience tracks, to relay clear-cut ear-candy. His own take on deliveries is so unique and fresh, it’s exactly what music needs at the moment, breaking through a crowd of saturation.
‘Neither Would I’ offers an anthem for those who have experienced loss, the production meshed with the thumping vocal delivery build an anthem that leaves the listener in a euphoric state. The production is stripped to the bare bones, with subtle hints of synth, a booming 808, and percussion dancing in the background of S-x’s strong vocal delivery – in fact, you could be forgiven for wondering if this was an instrumental to begin with. S-X’s vocal range and versatility in this song is the cherry on top, an exceptional song in his repertoire, and in my personal opinion one of his best.
The latter half of the tape, though, misses the mark that the first 12 tracks hit so well, leaving me wanting more of what S-X gave through ‘Neither Would I’ and ‘Loopholes’. The tape lost the same writing, delivery, and level of poised musical production that the first half of the tape executed so well. Take a song like ‘Stories’: when the song started to diversify in the delivery on the second-verse and a build up started to arise, I was hooked; however, it went back to the monotone delivery that the song had been giving for the whole time. It felt like it could have been one of the strongest songs in S-X’s arsenal, if there was a tad more variation.
This project is exactly what S-X needed to release to set his artistry in stone, if there were any doubts, they have faded. If there was any question in mind, it has been answered. S-X is an artist paving his own lane, and he is here to stay. A repeat will occur.
Words: Ramy Abou-Setta
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