I ain’t gonna lie: I wasn’t exactly buying the whole “Solange-as-aesthete-outsider” story that was going around last year in advance of the release of her latest album. I get that she (or the execs at her label, anyway) wanted to make it clear she wasn’t her sister. I get that. I get that they were pursuing the “this is the substantive younger sister” avenue; the “more than just a SuperDiva” angle. I get that. They wanted us to believe that she was the genuine article — a real artist. And the record was pretty darn good… but, I don’t know, I just wasn’t biting. They were pitching her like she was some kind of left-field art-school lo-fi indie-chick phenom. Like she was recording chorus-less banjo music for exclusive release on 8-track and cassette single.
Reality check: Her name is Solange. Knowles. As in Beyonce.Â I mean really.
And then I heard this song.
Now, part of me feels like this is just one facet of the ploy to win over wary skeptics like myself. And maybe she’s trying to convince us thatÂ unexpected is equivalent to artistic, which of course it’s not. I’ll even concede that Solange’s version doesn’t touch the original… ButÂ I mean, for the love of Jehovah, she’s covering the Dirty Projectors here. Where does a Knowles girl even hear ofÂ the Dirty Projectors. And I don’t care that it’s a recycled beat (a legendary, epic recycled beat); or that the song begins to drag by the end. The girl tackles a substantially dense track by one of the great Art-Outfit bands of the 00’s and absolutely pulls it off. It may not reach new heights, but it soars pretty damn high. Don’t look now, I’m a believer.
(And, ps. if you ain’t acquainted with the Dirty Projectors, remedy that.)
Dirty Projectors: Stillness Is The Move
Solange: Stillness Is The Move