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ZZ Ward "Eleven Roses" (Mixtape Review)


Once in a rare moment you are captured by a voice so powerful that it changes everything. Platinum-selling artists like Adele and newcomers like Michael Kiwanuka are a few of those innately talented artists who can use their voice to add a dose of emotional intensity to their songwriting that grips listeners instantly. 

Los Angeles singer/songwriter ZZ Ward is one of those striking new talents who has a voice that hits you straight to the core. Combining her gritty, soulful delivery with poignant songwriting, Ward is slowly but surely carving out a unique niche of her own that is best described as hip hop inspired blues pop. It's a sound that Ward likes to call "dirty shine" that is a nod to Moonshine's spicy hot sauce, which causes an explosion of the senses, much like Ward's music.

Last week, Ward independently released a mixtape of tunes to introduce more people to her music. After gaining traction with her clever Halloween remake of Tyler, The Creator's "Yonkers," this new collection of tunes, entitled "Eleven Roses," also features her reinterpretations of other hip hop songs including Childish Gambino's "You Know Me," Freddie Gibbs' "Oil Money" and Wiz Khalifa/Curren$y's “Rooftops."  

In a press releases, ZZ explains why she chose the title "Eleven Roses" for this mixtape that gives us a few more good clues about her sonic point of view. "I write from experience," she says. "No matter how good it feels or how much it hurts. In my experience, love seems to comes up short, like eleven roses to a dozen. It can be so close to perfect but something is always missing."  

The free "Eleven Roses" release also boasts two originals produced by Kid Cudi/Cool Kids collaborators, Blended Babies. Also included are "Till The Casket Drops" and "Last Love Song," two acoustic renditions of songs to be featured on Wards' debut full-length LP that is due out later this year.

"Last Love Song" is one of the stand out tracks on "Eleven Roses" that truly shows off Ward's flawless artistry. Staying true to the meaning behind "Eleven Roses," "Last Love Song" is a powerfully emotive tune that reminisces about a near-perfect love that was not meant to be. Filled with touching, relatable anecdotes, this song easily matches the quality of Adele's finest work and is downright a massive hit in the making. (Download ZZ Ward "Eleven Roses")

January 9, 2012 | Permalink