Surinamese-Dutch folk pop singer-songwriter néomí releases her debut EP before, via PIAS. A collection of tender storytelling and built with cushioned instrumentation, the EP is a glorious five-track affair of acoustic arrangements and ethereal storytelling.
Opening with possibly one of the best songs of the year, "if i wasn't made for love" is a meditative ode to being worthy of love. Questioning if love would be simple if it was meant for you, the track introduces us to néomí's glacial vocals and free-flowing melodies enveloping us in a blanket of hushed guitars and relatable lyrics. On the guitar-led "redemption", the track fuses warm tones delicate guitar plucks, while "not good enough" showcases néomí's heavenly vocals with such expertise. Drawing us in with her dulcet sounds, néomí's ability to coax you in and leave you feeling refreshed is spellbinding.
With the glacial harmonies on "i'll be there", the track produces a peaceful daze with its acoustic slumber that carries you into an angelic moment of calmness. It's a powerful slice of indie-folk, once again noticing the prominence of the acoustic guitar which guides the way into the search for mental strength. "Sometimes it is hard to make choices in life. Sometimes you have the feeling that everything comes down to you and that everyone is watching what you’re about to decide," explains néomí. "Your head explodes and you can’t see clearly, and you just need someone to stand next to you and say; “no matter what, I’ll be there”."
Using her sombre guitar tones and ethereal piano notes to create the backdrop to "eyes filled with the sky", the track layers dainty piano notes with textured percussion to draw the EP to a sleek end. Yet, before that happens, "eyes filled with the sky" unravels itself into a soothing lullaby that carries the message of solidarity with those who might feel, at times, not good enough. The EP closer anchors those feelings and detours those thoughts into resilience.
néomí's debut EP before is a reflective moment of folk-led bliss. Harnessing her vocal power and injecting her inherent talent for hooking you in with the winding narratives, néomí is an artist who deserves to be noticed and adored. For a debut EP, each single is worthy of our time and appreciation to really soak in the magical world of néomí. This is how it should be done.
before is out now via PIAS.