Alt-soul musician Dessireé takes a deep dive into the nuances of being a Black woman, moving from raw vulnerability to vibrant creativity led by a powerful combination of soulful vocals, rich soundscapes and empowering lyricism on her debut EP Tell Me Y. Infused with her signature jazz sound with innovative themes underpinned by a core message of freedom for Black women, Dessireé draws us into a sonic journey that’s intimate and relatable.
Starting with “Insanity,” which sees her assume a persona of ‘Miss Dessy’ drawn from the fond nickname she was called by students from her time as a teacher. A piece of music written before she began pursuing her passion in music, the emotive track harkens back to the beginnings of the rising act’s early music career.
Early highlight “Change Your Ways,” gives us a glimpse of vocal versatility as her voice effortlessly hits high notes backdropped by gentle beats and minimal piano, while “Sway,” makes for something more playful with melodic lilt and ebbing beats.
Fourth track “Unrequited,” sees her take on yet another identity, this time as ‘Housewife Dessy,’ as her explores unrequited love based on heartbreak and gender roles of eras past. Rooted in the 1950s-60s where the primary role of a woman was that of a caretaker and her love found no appreciation, Dessireé transports us back in time, completely let us sink into love throughout history.
Uber groovy offering “Cycles,” sees the South London singer lean into a husky vocal tone layered over lush jazz-tinged instrumentals before final track “Redeemed,” employs smooth pianos and quiet delivery that builds to a soaring chorus to bring the seven-track production to a memorable end framed tightly an eclectic mix of rhythms.
With a celebration of femininity, sensuality and sensitivity, Tell Me Y is culmination of a passionate musical journey that began in 2019, injected with joy and contemplation equally as Dessireé breaks down the stereotypes she has faced all her life, she establishes herself as a powerhouse of talent.