Maty Soul - The Price of Consciousness (2011)

Maty Soul

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On the cover of Maty Soul's The Price of Consciousness, one may notice two parallel lines across her forehead that look similar to an equal sign.  These lines are not intended as beauty marks, but are designed as a symbol of her mission in life - her concern for the injustices that still plague this world.  Highly inspired during her childhood by human rights activists such as Martin Luther King Jr., Motown icon Marvin Gaye and reggae legend Bob Marley, the French singer/songwriter pursued a path in music because of their unwavering voices for equality and peace.  Maty Soul shared an equal passion for urban music, traveling cross-country from the south of France to Paris to catch her hip-hop and soul heroes in concert.  Her warm, raspy alto that echoes Lauryn Hill has been road tested throughout regional clubs and music festivals since 2001.

On the cover of Maty Soul's The Price of Consciousness, one may notice two parallel lines across her forehead that look similar to an equal sign.  These lines are not intended as beauty marks, but are designed as a symbol of her mission in life - her concern for the injustices that still plague this world.  Highly inspired during her childhood by human rights activists such as Martin Luther King Jr., Motown icon Marvin Gaye and reggae legend Bob Marley, the French singer/songwriter pursued a path in music because of their unwavering voices for equality and peace.  Maty Soul shared an equal passion for urban music, traveling cross-country from the south of France to Paris to catch her hip-hop and soul heroes in concert.  Her warm, raspy alto that echoes Lauryn Hill has been road tested throughout regional clubs and music festivals since 2001.  The big recording break was made possible by a meeting with rapper/producer Walking Bass, who signed her to No Waiting In Vain - an appropriately titled record label considering Soul's lifelong mission to address social awareness. 

Recorded in 2008 but released in 2010, The Price of Consciousness is an intense soundtrack of Maty Soul's in-your-face views of equality, apathy and love backed by hip-hop fueled old school soul and roots reggae.  The Price of Consciousness finds her surrounded by a number of top-notch  musicians who have worked with the likes of Hill, Maxwell, Alicia Keys and The Roots.  

Maty Soul's powerful messages are apparent throughout The Price of Consciousness, but the emotions run all over the board.  "My Mind Went To The 70's" passes on shout outs to the music and causes she embraced from that era:  "Listening to Marvin n' Martin, Fighting for my woman's rights."  "Herbal Tea" searches for answers about passive attitudes:  "All I want is real emotions, free sensations, Is it still possible?"  Sarcastic points about racial inequality ring throughout "I Breathe Like That":  "Yes I don't care what I look like.  My skin is too light, my skin is too dark?"  Maty Soul unleashes gospel vamps on "Rhythm," a sweet analogy of how dance compares to cleansing the soul: "Can't describe the feeling / my feet started to dance a strange way / Knew it was going to be a part of my life from this day."  Three tracks are sung in French, including a tribute to one of Maty Soul's major political influences: "Enfants De Martin Luther King." She also honors Marley with a cover of his trademark 1976 hit "War," a plea for restoring peace within all nations.  

There are a few bumps on The Price of Consciousness, such as Maty Soul's occasionally heavy-handed vibrato and the lyrically lame "Love Jones."  Overall though, Maty Soul unapologetically drives her points home on The Price of Consciousness in a very soulful, raw musical setting.

Music:  3.0 stars
Lyrics:  4.0 stars
Vocals:  2.5 stars
Production:  3.0 stars
SoulTracks Call:  Recommended

By Peggy Oliver 

 
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