Rationale has one of the most elegant, passionate and recognisable vocals in the UK R&B scene. Over the years he has been building a name for himself with him garnering support from the likes of Elton John, Justin Timberlake as well as Dan Smith (Bastille) who eventually signed Rationale to his logo Best Laid Plans.
Today his High Hopes EP has come out and, as usual, he doesn’t disappoint. This EP offers an eclectic mix of tracks that demonstrate his natural ability to write and produce music to an incredibly high standard that will leave you begging for more.
The EP opens up with Explosions which, ironically, isn’t an explosive start to the EP. In fact this is one of the more calming and laidback tracks on the EP that takes your hand and leads you on a calming journey with Rationale’s vocal being your guide. It’s the type of track you’ll find yourself nodding your head along to without even realising.
Now this track is what you’d call explosive! As expected, High Hopes opens in absolute style with Rationale coming out with a powerful vocal display with an alluring piano melody backing him before launching into the full production with an array of compelling synths and irresistible beats. This track is one of the highlights of the EP both with the production quality and brilliant songwriting.
Kindred is the ballad of this EP but Rationale makes sure it’s a lot more than the standard dull dross ballad that’s become expected of most artists to do. The track builds from the gentle beginning to a climatic end with en emotive vocal that makes you get a strong emotional connection to every word that he is singing.
This next track has gotten a lot of radio attention from Radio 1, I’m certain I’ve heard it every time I’ve entered a car as of late. One By One is a good track, in fact I’d say it’s perfect for any party playlist with the soft synth beats that get your foot tapping and put you in the mood for going out and having a good night.
The final track is one of my personal favourites because the production is simply phenomenal with the mixture disjointed electronic beats contrasting the ambience of the rest of the track that puts you in a calmed state along with the softer side of Rationale’s vocal coming through in this track. 73 has just got that sense of tender emotion that I’ve never really heard like this before from him. Heartbreakingly beautiful is the best way to describe it.
Rationale doesn’t disappoint with his music and this whole EP is an example of that. Not one of these tracks falls flat, they all offer something different and all stand out in their own way, leaving you wanting more.