Discover Electro-Noir with ‘Goddess’ by BANKS

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You have probably heard one of her songs by now; in a movie, a movie trailer, or a risqué Victoria’s Secret commercial. Banks has been mysteriously and meticulously sauntering through the music scene since early 2013. Her first track, “Before I Ever Met You” was self-penned and secretly shopped to various musical managers by a close friend of hers and caught the attention of her now manager and team at Harvest Records. Once posted to Soundcloud, the song garnered over 200,000 listens in a few months and she instantly became an enigmatic force that warranted endless curiosity.

Her lyrics are raw, gritty, and painstakingly honest. Her voice is melodic, light, and reminiscent of that of Feist or Lykke Li but at times, her grit smolders into a husky growl and is ridiculously enthralling. She mixes the two into a sultry whirlwind of her deepest thoughts and confessions; each song having its own heartbeat with smooth, enticing, heavily atmospheric synthesized production that smothers the listener and pulls every inch of them in. Her genre is a mix of acoustic, electronic, and R&B, all with the help of producers Lil’ Silva, TEED, and SOHN, to name a few, who, in their own right, are geniuses in this realm.

Goddess is seemingly an album for the generation whose heart matters are tossed between a fight for instant gratification and commitment issues. The majority of the album gives life to the unfortunate, anxiety-ridden, heart heavy topics that are seldom confessed but widely felt. Songs like, “You Should Know Where I’m Coming From” where Banks opens with,

“What if I said I would break your heart? What if I said I had problems that made me mean? What if I said I would just rip your mind apart? Would you let me out? Maybe we can stop before we start. Maybe you can see that I just maybe too crazy to love. If I told you solitude fits me like a glove, would you let me out?”

…let you in on her inner most thoughts; Her voice ethereal but strained in her doubtful plea, struggling with self-deprecation and her yearning for her partner.

On “This Is What It Feels Like”, the songstress desperately tries to explain to her lover, over robotic, bass-heavy production, how puzzling and heart heavy their relationship is.

“Remember the first time that we met? You said that you couldn’t sleep cause of me, told me I caught you off-guard. And then when you saw I felt the same, you pulled away; started acting like being with me was too hard. This is what it feels like..”

If that isn’t relatable enough to the 20-somethings of the world, then one can’t be quite sure you are doing your twenties right by today’s standards.

She cements her beguiling and gloomy enchantments in tracks like “Drowning” where she’s unquestionably overwhelmed by the one-sided war of questions and doubt she is battling; “Beggin’ For Thread” where she unapologetically reveals her part in the web of this unhealthy, uncommunicative relationship and on one of her most popular tracks, “Waiting Game” Banks hums the intro, setting the haunting, fragile, and unstable scene, revealing to the listener why there is so much promise in this voice.

The album is woven so seamlessly together, bringing the listener on a journey of a potential love addict and the many rights and wrongs, wrong occurring more times than right. Influences of the era of Aaliyah and Timbaland are prevalent, hints of Nelly Furtado’s nasally timbre are noticeable, but Banks successfully carves out her own path with Goddess. Usually adorned from head to toe in black, her videos aesthetically dark, enigmatic, and in black and white, Jillian Banks isn’t your typical mainstream, Billboard Hot 100 artist. However, that’s the charm of Banks; she’s different. And we like that.

Album Highlights: Waiting Game, Brain, This Is What It Feels Like, Fuck Em’ Only We Know, Drowning, Beggin’ For Thread, Warm Water

Wasn’t On The Album But You Should Check Out: And I Drove You Crazy (Deluxe)

Last Note: Check out her videos. They give me goose bumps!

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