If you know of MAYA JANE COLES, then you know that her upcoming album, Comfort (release on 28 June under her record label I/AM/ME) is way overdue.
The London-born DJ and producer took a break from the dance music scene in 2012 after causing a stir (among DJ, fans and critics) with the seriously funky debut single, What You Say back. The 2010 track received over 2 million hits on You Tube. Her fan base steadily grew after churning out a number of innovative and varied house EPs, which includes Don’t Put Me In Your Box (for Hypercolor) and Focus Now (for 20:20 Vision).
After taking a break from releasing tracks for major house labels, MAYA JANE COLES is back, armed with a 12 track production which may take some die-hard fans by surprise as it is a slight change from her signature sound of deep, low down dirty house creations. Comfort still contains her trademark –the heavy but heavenly bass tones- but it’s coupled with subdue and dreamy electronic melody. Whereas her previously efforts were made strictly for the dance floor, these songs from her debut album are more suited for chilling out with friends – after a night out.
As well as skilfully producing this full length album, MAYA JANE COLES showcase her rather light, crisp and (I dare say it) Madonna-esque vocals in half the songs, including the ultra-mellow Comfort and Dreamer as well as doing a duet with producer/rapper TRICKY in Wait For You.
Her collaboration doesn’t stop with TRICKY. There are a troop of guest vocals, providing the ultimate climax on the album. Love Affair singer KIM ANN FOXMAN lent her voice to the intriguing Burning Bright, while talented singer/songwriter NADINE SHAH featured the slight trip-hop/dubstep infused Blame. Other collaborations included the slightly racy Everything (with Karin Park) and Fall From Grace (feat. Alpines) and When I’m in Love (feat. Thomas Knight).
All in all, Comfort makes pleasant listening and the well-thought out production makes MAYA JANE COLES a very worthy producer. Having said that, I’m unsure whether the change of direction in music will win over her most dedicated fans of the serious funky house. I say this because there’s that subdue heavy electronic bass line that runs throughout the album which could potentially lose the listener’s interests.