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King avriel makes debut with a slinky and progressive album

3.5 out of 4 stars

Title
Thesis
Artist
King avriel
Label
Independent
Genre
R&b/soul

"I just need Beyoncé to let me write her next album and then the world would be saved."

What Avriel Epps was talking about in a recent interview was a platform, not a voice, for she very much has the latter.

On the deep-thinking neo-soulstress's slinky and progressive debut album, Epps (a.k.a. King avriel) expresses herself in an unbroken spirit stream, occasionally rapping or sublimely Auto-Tuned, always with an eloquence, candour and intelligence that demands attention.

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On the shimmering 180, the former model recounts a pill-popping past of fast-lane teenage living, a rape and subsequent abortion.

She's comparable stylistically to Frank Ocean or FKA Twigs, but her voice is her own and her rule is imminent. Long live King avriel. Bow down, Beyoncé.

Streaming here.

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About the Author

Brad Wheeler is an arts reporter with The Globe and Mail. More

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