Tag: “God’s Whisper”

Pop Debut Shows Off Atlanta Teenager Raury’s Epic Scope

Raury, performing in June in Atlanta on his 18th birthday, his first proper headlining performance. He called it Raurfest. Raury’s debut album, “Indigo Child,” will be released on Monday. (Troy Stains for The New York Times)
Raury, performing in June in Atlanta on his 18th birthday, his first proper headlining performance. He called it Raurfest. Raury’s debut album, “Indigo Child,” was released on Monday. (Troy Stains for The New York Times)

ATLANTA — In June, on the day Raury turned 18, he woke up earlyish and went to the aquarium here with an old friend for a low-key afternoon. He’d just graduated from high school, but this night was the real cause for celebration — a concert he’d been planning for months. He called it Raurfest.

It was an ambitious name for his first proper headlining performance, but Raury’s taste for the epic is among his most appealing characteristics. So that night, in a gallery space/abandoned industrial building near downtown, a dinner was organized in his honor, followed by a show under the stars.

Yesterday, Raury released his first album, “Indigo Child” — free online at indigochildproject.com, though he is signed to Columbia. It is, for the most part, an astonishingly assured debut, full of multipart songs teeming with deeply felt ideas. He has an easy way with melody but also a consistently grand-scaled sense of theater, which makes for music that’s intimate and imposing all at once.

It’s an album, he said, “made from frustrations, made from being looked down upon, made from being an outcast and not like everyone else.” His response to those obstacles is elegant pop that takes in tender soul, muscled rock and flickers of hip-hop attitude.

“I want it to sound like a World War III benefit concert,” he joked.

“God’s Whisper,” his breakthrough song, is like anarchic gospel, with a hollow stomp that could almost be borrowed from Mumford & Sons. “Cigarette Song” owes at least some of its silken attitude to Terence Trent D’Arby. Elsewhere, there are shades of Kid Cudi, Outkast and MGMT.

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