DAWN (aka Dawn Richard) is one of music’s most distinctive voices and songwriters, developing her own unique style via a tirelessly independent route.
In November 2016 DAWN released her album Redemption, which featured on Best of 2016 lists from Pitchfork, The Quietus, PopMatters, Vulture, PASTE and more, and was listed in Rolling Stone’s 10 Musical Renegades of 2016. She followed the album with a full 2017 US and European tour and played Pitchfork Music Festival, Sonar and more, and officially joined Adult Swim as a curator and designer.
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R&B - Released January 25, 2019 | Local Action
Ambient - Released November 18, 2016 | Local Action
R&B - Released January 15, 2013 | Our Dawn Entertainment
Goldenheart is a major culmination for Dawn Richard. After Hurricane Katrina left the New Orleans native without a home, the singer and songwriter's career took numerous turns. She released an independent album as Dawn Angelique, made (and even named) Diddy's band (Danity Kane), and co-starred in Diddy-Dirty Money. Too impatient to wait for her creativity to bloom at Bad Boy, she parted amicably from the label and plotted a rebirth as an independent solo artist. After a mixtape in 2011 and an album-length EP in 2012, there's this, a sumptuous and grand album in which Richard develops her conceptual vision to theatrical, hour-plus scope. Beside production partner Druski, Richard casts herself as an embattled queen who "faced the beast with both hands" and seeks her father "to ask him for favor to take down this monster." Even if all the majestic imagery throughout -- wrapped in depictions of guarding, fighting, surrendering, conquering, and so forth -- is taken merely as metaphorical code for everyday personal strife, the album can be overwhelming in its artistic indulgence and intensity. However, Richard and Druski are extraordinarily focused with a deep arsenal of high-quality songs that segues with nonstop suite-like smoothness. It's remarkable that it was made without a major-label budget, as it's deeply rich and advanced-sounding with a wide array of gleaming synthesizers and percussion sounds, from chest-thumping bass drums to handclaps to timpanis. Like Last Train to Paris and Armor On, the album is largely pop-oriented contemporary R&B, ranging from the breathy and pulsating balladry of "Frequency" to the steely yet open-hearted electro-funk of "Ode to You," with a little inspiration from European dance-pop. There's neither a false nor awkward move to be heard; even the references to Phil Collins' "In the Air Tonight" and Frank Miller's 300 seem natural and perfectly placed. Complete and correct, Goldenheart is a triumph. ~ Andy Kellman
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