Damn, how could people sleep on Res, man?
Philly songstress Res (rhymes with “peace”) definitely had a solid debut in her 2001 record How I Do, a tremendously underrated work which, to this day, still boggles my mind that it didn’t get her a bit more shine. Res has got attitude, and brings a lot of personality to the record, with a cool, a bit dismissive, and knowing kind of vibe about her. She has a good ear for the music, providing a sonically interesting and engaging mix of R&B, hip-hop, soul, dub, and alternative rock. She tackles subjects like media shallowness, relationships, self-expression, and more with earnestness and a easygoing style, and her confidence shines throughout the record like she’s got the whole game on lock. It’s not your typical early 2000s R&B record…which makes it all the more unfortunate that it only got some minor success on release, with some strongly performing singles but little sales. She languished on her label, MCA, and eventually went indie, touring and collaborating over the years. I discovered her through her collaboration with Talib Kweli as Idle Warship, and this record has gone on to become a cult classic over the years.
“They-Say Vision” was the big single from the record, one I remember hearing on the radio around my way back in 2002. 15 years on it’s still a great song. It sounds like a Fleetwood Mac outtake in the best way possible, a country/rock affair with an attitude and style that’s all her own. It’s definitely been on repeat for me all this week. Check it out.