It seems like nothing can stop Jorja Smith’s meteoric rise. Her first release, ‘Blue Lights’ was released on Soundcloud in January 2016. In the two years that followed, she has released an EP, been nominated for two MOBO awards and appeared on Drake’s More Life and on tour. Only three months after releasing the beautifully melancholic single ‘On My Mind’ with Preditah, she’s back with ‘Let Me Down’ featuring Stormzy. Where ‘On My Mind’ was an apparent deviation from Smith’s previous output, being a nostalgic, pacy garage tune, so ‘Let Me Down’ seems to be a return to the sombre ballads of Project 11. The instrumentation is minimal: simple piano chords, sparse percussion and subtle strings let Smith’s powerful voice dominate. The texture builds as Stormzy comes in, the percussion increasing in complexity to match the solid rhythm that his rapping creates. However, although Stormzy has shown that he can flourish in soulful, acoustic songs such as ‘Blinded By Your Grace’, his part here feels phoned in and lacks the depth and charisma that he usually brings; it just isn’t necessary. Despite that, Smith’s voice is like honey as always. Worth a listen.
Image: Pomona PR