Release Date: Jun 4, 2021
Record label: EMI
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Bold and brazen, it sets the precedent for the remainder of the album - a deep and emotionally charged welcome to her world. A spiralling yet graceful fall down the whimsical rabbit hole. Man Made's key drawing point comes from its medicinal and hypnotic persona, aided by Greentea's irresistible sage vocals. Lead track "Kali V2", visualised through a captivating red tinged video shot by ABOVEGROUND, is a song about death and rebirth.
Neo-soul has a tricky legacy: for artists like Erykah Badu and D'Angelo it was a groundbreaking way to align trends in rap music with more experimental forms of black music, but for Common and Lauryn Hill the genre came to resemble a self-indulgent rabbit hole. Greentea Peng's debut album attempts to channel the sprit of the Soulquarians, but is too often content with a lifeless MOR substitute. This Sound is a good example of Man Made at its peak, with infectiously syncopated grooves and verses that demonstrate a KRS-One style affection for long words ("This sound is physical, it's very physical / and literal, but metaphysical and mystical / and no, we're not in your peripheral").
Greentea Peng has always been ambitious. Part of a wave of neo-soul indebted vocalists emerging from the UK, she's perpetually sought out fresh sounds, attempting to push herself further and further, removing the barriers in front of her in the process. Debut album 'MAN MADE' was constructed during the long, strange months of 2020, and it's the sound of a spirit operating in a totally free manner, a conglomerate of astral soul sounds presented in a mosaic of creativity.
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