Kyle Kidd calls her/his/their just-released debut album Soothsayer “a sonic diary. A longing for salvation. A realization, an expression of elf-love. A vision of the future.”
Kidd, who describes themselves as a “queer, androgynous person” and “an artist, curator, community worker and visionary of social transformation,” answers to all pronouns which gives you an idea of what an expansive, inclusive performer they are.
Kidd came to a lot of people’s notice locally performing with Mourning [A] BLKstar, a fusion ensemble that mixes jazz, soul and spoken word, creating some of the most distinctive musical sounds in the area. But their own personal music is, if possible, even broader, incorporating classical, blues, gospel and funk creating what they call “Black Art” from the various strands of Black music, working fashion and video into their music.
On the eight-track album, Kidd’s powerful, elastic voice ranges restlessly between genres, sometimes wrapping itself around a tune in an almost traditional balladic fashion, at other times keening in an otherworldly manner. The music shifts with the singer’s musical moods as well, with an orchestra’s worth of instruments: evocative synths, brass, woodwinds, violin, harp, percussion, guitar. A dozen musicians are credited on the album including experimental harpist Stephan Haluska, guitarist Marcus Alan Ward, master drummer percussionist Neil Chastain, and Mourning [A] BLKstar bandmates RA Washington and Latoya Kent contributing songwriting and lyrics, Theresa May adding trumpet and William Washington on trombone.
“This album tells the story of longing to be saved, and realizing instead that salvation is in the deep work of self-love,” says Kidd in their press release. “It is divine. It is a vision of the future.”
Learn more about Kidd here.
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