SLO (the project from Jess Mills) is back with a breathtaking new four-track EP, Atone.
Alongside singles ‘Atone’ (featuring Bearcubs) and ‘Blind’, the EP also includes two new tracks, ‘Birds In A Cage’ and ‘Said and Done’ (featuring Krusoe).
Drawing comparisons to Jessie Ware, The xx and Låpsley, SLO has delivered a hypnotic EP, showing off her stirring vocals. There is a darker element to her new sound, which continues to highlight her incredible songwriting talent.
Atone was written and produced alongside her long-term collaborators Bearcubs, Jenry Binns (Zero 7) and Brad Ellis (The Nextmen). A year in the making, the team have spent their time perfecting this magical slice of electronica pop, with all four tracks complimenting each other beautifully.
Speaking of the EP, SLO said: “The Atone EP was written between London and LA last year. More than ever music has become and sanctuary for me- a place to block out the noise and be present. This EP is reaches back to the archives of unhappier times, but it also makes peace with a lot of the past too.”
Letting go doesn’t come easily to me – so this in itself feels like progress.
The first track, ‘Atone’, is simplistic and for the most past, focuses solely on SLO’s haunting vocals. It’s the perfect introduction to the EP, and as the song develops, it becomes a lot more powerful. At around the two-minute mark, the beat drops and the song is transformed into a slow jam of sorts, building up perfectly to the next track.
‘Blind’, our favourite song from the EP, is a sultry and hypnotic offering, particularly thanks to SLO’s breathy vocals. Speaking about the track earlier this year, SLO said that the song is about “the web of destruction you can weave around you when you’re being deeply dishonest with yourself” and “the brutal realization that you can’t protect the one you love from it anymore.”
‘Birds In The Cage’ is a slightly more uptempo track, providing a dreamy beat for you to bop around to. SLO’s breathy vocals are ever present, once again creating a hypnotic effect. This track borders more on the poppy side and provides a bit of light during the EP.
The final track is ‘Said and Done’, featuring Krusoe. With a stunning blend of voices, and lyrics such as “it is colder in the sun now you’re gone”, it is a poignant track which has been presented beautifully. In our mind, it’s a fitting ending to a pretty perfect EP
Since releasing her first EP as SLO last year, the singer-songwriter has garnered critical acclaim from numerous outlets, including The FADER, i-D, CLASH and Complex.
Minimal but all the more powerful because of it… her inspired crystal-clear voice pushed to the very front – THE FADER
Heartbreaking, beautiful and a bit breathtaking – i-D
SLO is a formidable force to keep one eye on at all times – THE LINE OF BEST FIT
Beautifully moody vocals – EARMILK
Luxurious and languid… honey-glazed tones and haunting honesty – COMPLEX UK
The singer has a softness, a tenderness of touch which is simply devastating – CLASH
Deliciously dark electro-pop… that ultimately feels full of wonder and light – INTERVIEW MAGAZINE
As well as creating her own music, SLO has written for the likes of Gorgon City, Joe Goddard and TALA. She also became an integral and influential member of leading refugee charity Help Refugees. The charity, founded by Radio X presenter Lliana Bird, writer and TV presenter Dawn OPorter, activist and comedian Heydon Prowse, and friend Josie Naughton, works to raise funds and collect goods in response to the current refugee crisis. At the time of writing, the charity has built over 1500 shelters and sent over 40 arctic lorries full of aid across Europe.
SLO is a force to be reckoned with. With a strong ability to encapsulate her thoughts into a song, and deliver the tracks with breathtaking vocals, we’re certain that she has a great future ahead of her.
Atone is available to download here.
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