Loick Essien is coming out of darkness with another quality set for us to enjoy.  Outside of the UK, some of his fans may not have heard anything from him since 2014’s Nobody where he lamented his place in the industry and looked for help to get further.  Since then it appears that he has found a new label home and has taken the time to craft a pretty solid freelease for us to enjoy.

Terminal 5 has the singer/rapper focusing exclusively on the singing part, which is a good thing because he has a good voice that he is able to make fit almost any track.  From his warm baritone to his lilting falsetto, he keeps the listener engaged from track to track by changing up his delivery and tone dramatically.  He can be boisterous and he can be contrite and loving; it all works and sounds great.  Add to that the fact that he barely uses any autotune (when he does, it isn’t distracting) and you have something that can connect to a plethora of people on many levels.

The production of the set can be a little monotonous at times due to similarities between the different songs, but they aren’t so similar that they can’t be told apart.  The tracks vary from slow to mid-tempo, which fits the overall love/relationship theme that is the focal point of this project (although there are a couple tracks about his grind).  The lack of bangers may leave some listeners cold, but I think there is enough here to make people appreciate the

Lyrically, the songs are pretty straightforward.  There aren’t any metaphor on the tracks and you get the meaning of what he’s saying right away.  The thing is that it doesn’t really hurt the set.  While it does mean there is really only one way to hear the song, it gives you a direct mood to enjoy this on.  And many of the tracks have an introspective or vulnerable quality that comes across more honestly without the use of couched language.

Our favorite tracks are My Side Of The City, Foolish, and Jealousy.  The most skippable tracks are My Way and The Other Side due to the fact that they are little out of place in the overall scheme of things.

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