Anticipation has been high for Tori Kelly’s newly released EP tori. However, what no one could have anticipated was that Tori would suffer a very serious health scare at the start of her big release week that landed her in the ICU. Over the weekend, she collapsed while out for dinner with friends and was rushed to the hospital where life-threatening blood clots were found. Days after the news of her hospitalization spread, Tori surfaced on social media with a statement updating fans on her condition and thanking them for their prayers and support. She also surprisingly shared that the EP would still be released as promised, and here we are.
Led by the effervescent single “missin u,” the tori EP is filled with more R&B-tinged pop along the lines of that track. The new single “cut” kicks the project off on an upbeat, flirtatious note as Tori gets an assist from Timbaland on ad-libs to give ’90s realness. After she gives her love interest some “cut,” she keeps the sweet talk coming on “shelter,” letting her man know that she’s always gonna hold him down.
Tori dabbles in Afrobeats on the song “unbelievable” and gets a feature from Nigerian superstar Ayra Starr. Their voices blend together beautifully, and Kelly sounds great in yet another genre. She jumps back to pure pop on the next two tracks, “alive til i die” and “young gun.” Given the circumstances of this week, the title “alive til i die” may give pause, but Tori is singing about a lover who gives her life. Meanwhile, on the duet “young gun” with Jon Bellion, they softly sing about navigating their lost love.
The EP ends with an “r&b edit” of “missin u” that slows the energetic pace of the original down to more of a chill bop. To be honest, Tori could have leaned more into R&B on this remix and even added a verse from a rapper to really mix things up. However, she does bless the song with the addition of a substantive bridge and soulful harmonies at its end.
Tori Kelly may be going through a rough patch with her health at the moment, but this new chapter on Epic Records is musically off to a fantastic start. tori may not be the full R&B project that we’re yearning for from the songbird, but we look forward to whatever direction she decides to take us next – once she’s fully rested and recuperated, that is.