Disclaimer: All views presented in this review are those of the reviewer and not of DJ Wade-O.
Last year served to be a great year for CJ King as his debut album Swrvn gave us several hits that are still circulating on radio stations today. Those hit singles include “Sinner Man”, “Swrvn” and “Good Day.” Now with 2017 in full effect, CJ King is bringing nothing but good vibes on his new EP The Session. In comparison to his first album, CJ stays in a similar lane with the sound production of the EP.
Overall, this is a good thing because musically, in my opinion, I believe CJ King is in a lane of his own and he’s found his own unique sound and style. The title of this EP prepares you for the energy you will feel throughout the project, as listeners gain more insight into CJ’s upbringing as well as the love he has for God and his wife, and how they all intertwined.
I believe listeners will enjoy the mellow vibes from this project. If you’re looking for trap beats you won’t find it on this EP. But I believe listeners will not be disappointed because the EP creates such a unique feeling that captures your attention and respect. This is definitely a feel good project that listeners can play from beginning to end and just enjoy the musicality of it all.
The opening track “ChurchBoi” immediately takes the listener into CJ’s roots of being raised in Atlanta, GA as a “PK” aka preachers’s kid, and how that shaped his life. He eludes to how much his family’s influence motivated him to make the right choices growing up. He also speaks about being a regular guy who God has allowed some major opportunities to come his way. The song is encouraging and it makes you feel as though anything in life is possible.
The next song on the project, “Got That”, opens with a smooth, melodic, hip-hop beat that automatically makes you bob your head as soon as you hear it. On this song CJ introduces a love story that starts with the music. The story progresses to the need for maturity in order to make the relationship work and ends with CJ having both the love of God and his special someone. The song has a good feel to it and listeners will appreciate the simplicity of the track.
“Tha Move” featuring the newly signed God Over Money artist Jered Sanders, references “the move” being a relationship with God. The production of the track consists of a repetitive synth blended with a light bass line. The simplicity of the beat works well with the rap verse of Jered because he brings a quick delivery style, but you’re not distracted by the production of the song. The listener can hear and understand the lyrics without a struggle, which is much appreciated.
The listener gets an inspirational vibe from the song “So High” featuring Aaron Cole which focuses on love, and the concept of being in love continues with the song “Perfect 4 Me” featuring Humble Tip. CJ’s emphasis on love in his music brings hope that having a healthy relationship, love and marriage is attainable for this generation. Although the theme of love is appreciated, it becomes a bit repetitive to hear on this EP. However, it’s understood that most artist write based on their current season in life. Listeners will enjoy the perspectives of love that CJ brings to the table.
The final song on the EP titled “Like That” takes a switch from the idea of love and turns it to the temptation of giving into our desires. The energy on this song is more dramatic in sound than the other songs on the EP, but it helps bring depth to the lyrics. The song gives a perspective of someone being tempted into a romantic situation, but the track motivates you to holdfast to what you know is right and to have people around you that hold you accountable. This message of the song doesn’t necessarily flow with the other tracks on the project, but the content makes it worth listening to and the vibe of the production is still follows that mellow feeling.
I think it’s safe to say that in this “session” with CJ King, life is all about love and enjoying God. The Session is an EP that sounds good and listeners who enjoy soulful, heartfelt good music will appreciate the project. The musicality that CJ is bringing to the game right now is appealing and needed. He’s switching up the style that a lot of artists are taking, so the difference in his sound will continue to gain attention.
For an artist to write about real life and true emotions makes it more enjoyable for the listener because you’re getting a better understanding of that artist. On his Instagram account, CJ mentions that 90% of the EP was put together in one week. Based on that simple fact alone, I believe the project came out very well. I look forward to seeing the growth in the content of CJ’s music in the upcoming seasons of his life.