I really try to look out for the independent artists. Hell, all things considered, we’re an independent artist here at Soulections so I tend to feel a certain kinship with them when it comes to appreciation and spreading the word. Previously, with the Independent Spotlight, we introduced (in some cases) you to Avery Sunshine, and Andy Allo. Since then, Avery has been rolling through the country and selling out shows everywhere and is currently on tour with Eric Roberson. Andy Allo is popping up on sitcoms and commercials and her buzz is steady growing. Now I’m not taking ANY credit, repeat, I’M NOT TAKING ANY CREDIT for any of that, I mention that only to say that I’m happy for them and glad that we were able to feature them on our site. I’ve recently been put onto 2 more independent artists, the one we’ll talk about today is Joonie. Most outlets reviewed this album when it dropped last year, but we weren’t around at the time, so we’re a bit late on this one.
Acoustic Love is the debut album that showcases Joonie’s songwriting, singing, and production skills in one 12 track debut. The album kicks off with “So Fly” which is the lead single from the album (video). The song is pretty straight forward about him appreciating the object of his affection, by calling her “so fly.” The sound is pretty layered and inviting. You hear everything from bells to bongos and it’s all done with precision. When “Delilah” comes on, I’m immediately soothed by the tranquil sounds of the keys and “oh’s” that are being chanted to help build the structure of the song. It’s really refreshing to hear a male sing to his own vulnerability in a way that isn’t so macho that the emotion is masked. It kind of puts me in the mind of some Smokey Robinson classic that I can’t put my finger on yet. No sooner than after I feel accomplished for correctly identify the feeling the last song gave me, I’m greeted with what could almost be called an updated “Cruisin.” I really enjoy the way “You Got Me” seems to not just BE a song about that feeling, but it captures that feeling musically. He continues in that theme of creating and capturing moments with “Love You More” where the message is just as simple as the title. This isn’t about physical love, the song is about that “real” love we all seem to be searching or at various points in our love. The song is simply beautiful and you can really hear his voice over the soft playing strings. By the time “Just The Way You Are” comes on, I’m looking to see how he outdoes himself with each offering. “Tell me love don’t last, and I’ll show you different / 12 years, ups n downs, and we’re still here (still here) / So when you think about love, just remember me / cause I ain’t goin nowhere, you’re my destiny.” These romantic lyrics are accompanied simply by Joonie playing the keys and the occasional base hit (which really sounds like someone striking the side of an object like the piano, and not a real drum.) With simplicity and writing, he manages to up the ante with each song and continues to make each song better than the previous one.
I won’t pretend that the album doesn’t have it’s slip ups, for example, I’m not a fan of “Stalker” at all. I feel like everything about that song is antagonistic to the feel of the album. But even with that said, I can count what I dislike about this album on one hand while I need all my fingers and toes to talk about what was done right. Joonie got into the game to be a writer and I think that his meticulous attention to detail and production are really what allow his talent to shine through on this album and make it an amazing debut. I DEFINITELY recommend this album and at $6.99, it’s as gentile on your wallet as it is on your ears.
Check the video for “So Fly” below