Sallay Matu Garnett, known by her stage name Loah, has released her EP ‘This Heart’ online and in-stores June 16, 2017. The EP is mature, culturally aware and eclectic.
Loah’s sound is reminiscent of ‘folk’ and ‘soul’, a genre she refers to as ‘Artsoul’ music. Her classical training in piano, violin and voice seep through the sound waves to deliver a high quality production. Her music is also alternative and experimental, so her true artistry comes from knowing the rules and then bending them to suit the artists’ purpose.
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Garnett’s diversity comes from her Sierra Leonean / Irish origin and growing up in Maynooth and West Africa. She also spent time developing in Brooklyn, New York with local artists and musicians. Her deeply philosophical and well crafted lyrics give listeners a taste of raw, natural talent and a voice commanding the chance to tantalize ears and sooth souls. ‘This Heart’ is a unified sensory experience; but, Loah’s authentic voice is not muffled too much by computed manipulation as the beautiful language of Krio, a lingua franca of Sierra Leone enters into the chorus. Garnett’s verses imply the socially aware artist reflecting the social/political/medical issues of her country. Lyrics from ‘This Heart’ such as ‘Want in Ghana for change…in your speech be justified…your blood is true you are sanctified’ glides over a melodious jazz like mezzo piano sound. Garnett’s music is mindful and therapeutic. Also, her song ‘Nothing’ is more upbeat but the mellow and warm pitched sounds are healing and rightfully coincide in lyricism with relation to matters of the heart. As a once part-time pharmacist in Dublin, the healing aspect of Loah’s sound is clear as her vocals give way to a euphoric, transcendent experience.
‘This Heart’ seems more like a stream of consciousness from an artist speaking to herself and revealing those thoughts to the world. Her powerful lyrics will bring more attention to the issues of West Africa as well as the unique body of work she produces. Garnett re-introduces herself to the world by acknowledging a state of weakness now conquered. She claims when a form is changing ‘you got to lay it down’ and this means she or anyone with a voice can speak healing, life and truth into an ever-changing world.
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Loah also co-wrote a song with Hozier and sang with Kila. She claims ‘I might be singing a Capella folk lament tonight and tomorrow it will be a rhythmic, chanted Sierra Leonean stomper but by golly do I mean business in both!‘ Garnett indeed means business as she re-emerges on a Dublin music scene with other international goals. Loah’s dualistic sound promises a unique musical experience.