The last time that Hil St. Soul dropped an album, George W. Bush was still president, Barack Obama made history when he was elected the next POTUS and this very publication was a tiny one-year-old music blog. The year was 2008, and Hil capped a tight nine-year, four-album run with the release of Black Rose. And fans have been waiting for its follow-up ever since. Thankfully, though, her last album wasn't her last album ever. After 14 years between releases, Hil St. Soul makes a dazzling comeback with her fifth album Back In Love, and SoulBounce is presenting the exclusive world premiere.
That much time between albums is quite a gap. Fans may have assumed that she'd retired from music and gone on to pursue other endeavors. However, the Zambia-born, UK-based artist born Hilary Mwela honestly just needed to rest and recenter herself.
"I took a break from recording as I was searching for some greater musical inspiration," Hil shares about her absence from the spotlight. She found it in her native land where she spent a year on the local music scene. Rejuvenated and refreshed, she returned home to London and got a call from Noel Gourdin's manager to work with him on the remix to his song "No Worries" in 2014. According to Hil, "That was the catalyst that got me back to recording again."
The record was also the start of a beautiful working relationship between Hil and Noel, which continues on Back In Love. Their voices blend beautifully on the single "Blessed" and the equally upbeat and loving duet "Amazing" driven by organ and their organic harmonies. We're happy to have this new solo album from Hil, but we don't think anyone would be mad if her next project was a collection of duets with Gourdin. They sound blessed and amazing together, indeed.
Soul holds down the remainder of Back In Love, and she sounds incredible from start to finish. Time has been kind to her voice; she sounds as good today as she did back in the day – if not better. Her vocals are pristine across the board on soulful mid-tempo tracks "One Life," "A Feeling So Beautiful," "Party On," "Love And Fire" and "Fingerprints" and slow jams "King," "In My Groove" and "Sweet Heaven" and her blissful cover of The Ohio Players' "Heaven Must Be Like This."
Producers Regi Myrix, Lorenzo Johnson and Prince Damon not only pull the best out of Hilary vocally, but they also brought their A-game to their productions. These tracks sound as if they were tailored just for her and the fit is perfect. Meanwhile, on the songwriting side of things, the lyrics have substance as Hil celebrates love, life and her journey to now.
Back In Love may be Hil St. Soul's comeback album, but she didn't have to get her groove back. She never lost it. She's returned after 14 years like she never left and released an album that is the total package.
Listen to SoulBounce's exclusive world premiere of Back In Love below before its Friday, November 18th release.- Advertisement -