Having already been featured in publications such as Essence Magazine who describe her as artist who "incorporates every piece of her journey into her music", Amana Melome, a European-born Caribbean-American wanderlust who explored and continues to travel the world, is becoming a real artist to watch.
2016 is sure to be a big year for Amana and to kick it off, she has released an LP of remixes, aptly titled Lock and Key - The Remixes, showcasing not only her own talents, but those of an array of gifted producers and musicians.
Beginning with the Felix remix of the title track, the LP gets off to a strong start, helped greatly by Melome's impressively strong and soulful vocal. The instrumentation and beat also makes for a number hard to resist tapping your feet along to.
The Daz-I-Kue Remix of "Save My Soul" slows things down a little but maintains the smooth soul-jazz style which which Amana has become so accustomed to and known for. It's certainly not a bad number, but it lacks the punch of its predecessor.
Fortunately though, it fairs better than the instrumentation heavy Daz-I-Kue's remix of "Lock and Key". Vocally, when combined with the music, the track seems very mis-matched, rather out of sync and as a result, may find itself being skipped over by a number of those who give it a listen.
Thankfully, things improve somewhat with the arrival of "Icarus", the Opolopo remix. Again, the piece is very instrumental based, but the vocal this time works in harmony alongside it, making for a far more enjoyable listen, notably when Amana shows off just how powerful a voice she has.
Following on from that is the Slimbo remix of "Lock and Key", by some distance the best remix of the entire collection. With a super catchy dance rhythm that would and should go down a storm played in clubs and party venues around the world, it's sure to find itself being put on repeat time and time again,
Slimbo also does a good job remixing "Save My Soul" presenting a track that has a very Jamaican, groovy feel to it that will have listeners on their feet and dancing. It's then up to Mark De Clive Lowe to showcase his remix abilities via "Lock and Key". Considering the upbeat tempo of many of the remixes which have come before, this one is much softer and laid back - it's not that it doesn't work, because it does, but it feels somewhat out of place among the collection, making it one of the weaker numbers.
I-Kue's remix of "Icarus" is very similar to work done on "Lock and Key." Once again very instrumental heavy and with Amana's vocal more breathy and subdued than on other remixes the collection offers up, it has little with which to excite listeners and encourage them to give it more than the occasional play.
In closing out the collection with the Firefly remix of "Lock and Key", Amana Melome rescues the LP. The track might lack the ferocity and power of other numbers, but by allowing Amana to once again showcase her smooth, strong vocal it certainly highlights the singer as a woman with undeniable talent and most likely a rather bright future ahead of her.
This collection most certainly won't be for everyone but it's pretty safe to say that fans of soul and dance may very well lap it up.
Lock and Key - The Remixes is available now on itunes.