We are proud to present Re – Percussions taken from “Portrait of a Soul on Fire”, the first EP from Maracuja, a trio composed of Stephane Lefrancois, Sarkis Ricci and Elle Holgate who together have created an infectious and joyful blend of afro – beat, funk and jazz.
Stephane’s blend of live percussion and electronic grooves are the perfect playground for Sarkis’ bouncy bass lines, catchy hooks, and soloing escapades on the keys, finished off by Elle’s intriguing and ethereal vocal poems. A musical tapestry of cinematic story-telling, Balearic lullabies, and sunshine-soaked jazzy landscapes.
Maracuja open the dance with Re-Percussions, a groovy instrumental with an uplifting vibe, the ideal appetizer for the following courses, a little warmup, if you will.
The title track, Portrait of a Soul on Fire, is a mesmerizing piece of lyricism. Afro drums, a growly bass line, and hauntingly sparse chords leave plenty of space for Elle to paint a picture of the archetypal artist’s journey; a combination of inspiration, bliss, blood sweat and tears, where colour, intertextuality and passion collide. Between spoken word and singing, she weaves her beguiling spell paying homage to the greats that came before.
With Chanel Blues, Maracuja pick up the pace and energy. The drums are frantic, jumpy, ever – driving. Sarkis’ guitars, keyboards and bass provide an inspiring backdrop for an age-old tale of material possession at the expense of depth.
Bassoon goes back to a chilled out afro beat groove with a meandering bass line, rhodes and layers of floaty synths, punctuated by Sarkis’ wurlitzer outbursts woven into melodic vocal hooks and a lighthearted ocean-view worthy poolside soundtrack.
The closing track, Goddess, is an ode to femininity in its all-encompassing creative and fertile energy. The decidedly afro-beat tinged drums and bass offer a solid foundation for Sarkis’ beautiful theme and mischievous jazzy solos. Elle’s tribute to feminine energy is heavily flavoured with inspiration for one of her favourite female artists; the unparalleled poetry of Ursula Rucker.
Maracuja are also lucky enough to be surrounded by many inspiring musicians, who offered their talents for remixing.
Rhythms of Prescott’s rework of Bassoon is a floor filling, groovy, chunky monster of a track. The triplet, shuffle drum groove relentlessly drives the energy, while swirling pads, vocal cuts and chords turn this piece into a memorable party starter.
Rise Ashen’s rub of Chanel Blues is a masterpiece of deconstructed revisiting. With his signature, driving grooves and arrangement, Rise completely flips the original version around, playfully highlighting Elle’s and Sarkis’ vocals, creating a captivating journey through some of the original’s more hidden elements.
Finally, Gregorio’s interpretation of Portrait of a Soul on Fire offers a balmy, ambient infused closure to the EP, jazzy hooks lulling the listener into an introspective, emotional finish. Floaty piano lines, upright bass and soft, surging pads create the ideal backdrop to showcase Elle’s lyrics. There was no better way to close the curtain, for now, on this Maracuja feast.
Stay tuned at Electronic ConnectFM Tracks of the Month selection and Listen to Maracuja’s new music first
Cover design : Eleonore Laurent