At a time when racial tensions and social divides are seemingly at an all-time high, one might struggle to find the beauty in anything. Though often cleverly interwoven with components of stolen cultures, marketing campaigns suggest that our features need to be tamed or even masked completely. Meanwhile, think-pieces and some of the most popular music content insinuates that monogamy has become obsolete, further threatening the stability of the black family unit. Despite all the distractions that call our values and our individuality into question, singer/songwriter Such scoffs at the notion that her very being is anything less than worthy of love and acceptance. According to her, she’s fought long and hard toward fully embracing and loving herself, and her new album Wide Nose Full Lips is a celebration of all the things that make up her beauty, her blackness and her brilliance.
The project opens with two dazzling declarations of love, “All I Want” and “Don’t Matter What They Say.” The smoldering ballads serve a sensual vibe similar to the album’s lead single, “Before Dark,” and we settle into a mood made for a bit of adult time. Just when we think we’ve got her all figured out, the Denver-based songstress kicks things up a notch with the unapologetic anthem, “The Real Thing” before transitioning to the introspective, spoken word track “Melanin” featuring artist, author and activist Kerrie Joy. We continue along Such’s self-love journey with the album’s title track and a mother’s ode to her young king, “For a Reason.” The project also features her critically-acclaimed cover of John Legend’s “Ordinary People” but ends on a high note with the vibrant track “Mood” and its mellow encore.
Overall, this album makes a few things very clear. First, Such’s tone is unmatched as she seamlessly transitions between a delicate handling of each note and powerful, rich vocals. Second, her lyrics convey a digestible defiance that is both relatable and tasteful. There’s something beautiful about being able to say exactly what you want, while still showing subtle hints of vulnerability. And lastly, long-time fans will notice her evolution as an artist since her debut album, Trial and Error. While her talent was always apparent, it seems Such is only getting better with time and we can’t wait to see all that she has in store.