‘Maxwell for a new generation’ – Hunger
‘The most jealousy-inducing of all emerging artists’ – This Is Fake DIY
‘Back To Me almost topples over with an acute sense of yearning that recalls Maxwell in his prime’ – The Guardian online
‘The teenage talent possesses the most extravagant, hair-raising falsetto we’ve heard this year’ – The Line of Best Fit
While most debut artists propose to offer something ‘different’ and ‘unique’, Joel Compass is a particularly rare talent who delivers on every level. A singularly talented male singer, songwriter and producer who is as visually interesting as he is lyrically and musically arresting; Compass combines an effortless credibility with huge commercial appeal.
The 20 year old Londoner’s debut track “Back To Me” had over 30,000 SoundCloud plays and 150,000 YouTube views in just one week, getting radio play from tastemaker DJ’s on BBC Radio 1, a 1 Xtra playlisting and attracting coverage on Hypebeast, Clash, The Hunger and The Guardian to name a few.
Joel has now released his 4-track debut EP, “Astronaut”, via Black Butter. He may be signed to a particularly British label, but aesthetically Joel has more in common with American singers like Miguel, Frank Ocean, The Weekend, D’Angelo and Maxwell. There’s no ‘popping bottles in the club’ or generic Euro Dance bangers, this is music with heart, emotion and a vulnerability rarely seen in someone so young. At turns, dark and disturbing, at others boldly witty and markedly candid, this is indie R&B at its best.
While it might be premature to compare Compass to a Kanye, he is certainly showing huge promise as a singer who is as strong at producing as he is composing. With newcomer K.Flay and Grammy winning John Legend having already recorded his tracks, there’s little to stop Joel becoming as renowned a beatmaker as a singer. “I’m just as ambitious about producing as I am singing; I want to work with all sorts of artists and I want people to come to me for my sound.”
Above all, like many of the great musicians before him, Compass is deeply driven and highly ambitious. “I like to reach certain goals and never go back. So where I am now, I won’t go back, ever,” he points out. “I know there are other artists doing a similar ‘atmospheric R&B’ sound, but the music I have coming is a progression on what’s come before. I hope I’m making music for tomorrow today.”
Joel Compass “Astronaut“ EP is out now. Download.
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