Published May 16, 2018To open The Golden Octave, Witch Prophet's highly anticipated debut, Ayo Leilani softly wonders, "What if I told you just who I was." It isn't so much a question as a preview of what follows: a summary of the cosmos in which Leilani floats. Within it, existence is questioned, love abounds, and though there is struggle, there is also so much hope.
Leilani sounds affable and confident throughout, her voice soft but mighty. She glides between existential musings on the standout "Time Traveler," on which Lido Pimienta's vocals dance blissfully in the background, to galactic exploration on another standout track, the funky "Stars." "Weight of the World" and "Listen," the latter featuring Lucas Silveira, are heavy with worry and pain, but by the end of both tracks, it feels like Witch Prophet has lightened these burdens. On "Indigo," a stuttering, bright beat illuminates Leilani words of love like sunlight hitting a hanging crystal, so an endless array of tiny rainbows drench the room.
The Golden Octave, a record that has been nearly ten years in the making, is Leilani's long-awaited formal greeting. As she drifts from chilled-out beats to danceable grooves without hesitation, never landing on one genre, Witch Prophet deft artistry has bottomless curiosity. (88 Days of Fortune)