Colorado-based producer/musician Spoken Thought makes an entry into our site with his latest release Soulful Serenity. The 20-track lofi instrumental project is inspired by many genres ranging from hip-hop, R&B/soul and contemporary pop and aims to give audiences a myriad of sounds with a dynamic feel.


When it comes to reviewing instrumental projects, it sometimes gets difficult to interpret what the producer’s true intentions are and while the core message plays second fiddle to the actual production, it’s also important to acknowledge it. Producers especially those in the lofi sphere come to a dime a dozen and can easily get brushed aside by repetition, familiar patterns and stale formulaic production but that is not the case here, Spoken Thoughts knows exactly what he is doing and one can tell that he has put in much thought (pardon the pun) into his craft. From the opening alluring salvo on “Souled Out”, Spoken Thoughts delivers an emotional piece with a touch of warmth. He sets the tone perfectly using myriad sound design techniques, layered samples, and a punchy drum groove. Tracks like  “Motown” and “Jay Dee” showcase his twist on the lofi genre with punchy drums, dusty piano chords, and subtle vocal samples with an underlining emotive oomph.

He continues to push the envelope with expansive production techniques and musical styles; employing downtempo trap grooves on “Candid”, discordant vocal samples and intricate sample chops on “Roots” or atmospheric textures on the ethereal-sounding “Escape”. The obvious titled “Dirty South” is a euphemism for something else as Spoken Thoughts crafts a superbly soul-gripping track comprising lush organ chords with dark, brooding sounds. The fun continues on the distorted aesthetics of “Down with That” but the kicker is the undeniable bounce that keeps my head bopping from side to side. Spoken Thoughts has a knack for raising the ante and this track takes the cake and then some. On “American Gangsta” and “Chill”, he goes into another sonic route with anthemic vibes. The former is a subtle nod to Jay Z’s “Roc Boys” with its triumphant horns, rousing drum breaks and prevalently soulful keys to boot while the latter is a mellow piano-driven piece with filtered techniques adding depth and space as it progresses.

The final quarter of the project runs the gamut in sounds and if I dare say, emotions.“Serenity” is cinematic and shows Spoken Thought’s world-building sounds. Its introductory feel creates an engulfing ambiance of nostalgia and comfort. “Smooth” is a smooth downtempo piece with soft keys or bell-like synths with pitched-down vocal chops that sound like glitchy 90s radio jingles. “Summer” is introduced by a rich guitar pluck underpinned by solemn strings, a moody vocal hum and hushed drums. On the final track “Cooler”, Spoke Thoughts tempers his sound with a soft drum groove underpinned by solemn keys, and surreal vocal chops which result in a reflective and almost melancholy feeling.  Other notable tunes include; “Names” with its dark trap vibe, the playful and bright sounds of “Out Here”  or the retro R&B aesthetics on “Church”. I did enjoy the sparse, Gospel-tinged “Patience” and its spacey choral vocals while “Lullaby” and “Keep It Moving” both gave me scenic vibes with a touch of introspection respectively.


Overall Soulful Serenity, is a cohesive body of work with rich and expansive soundscapes. Spoken Thoughts delivered the goods on this one.








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