Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Toronto's New Class of Soul: Listen to Daniel Caesar's EP 'Pilgrim's Paradise'

Something has been happening in Toronto for awhile now. The city is slowly becoming less musically known for its indie-rock community which, for the most part, is relatively self-contained, and more for the up-and-coming class of soul stars who are either a household name by now (The Weeknd) or emerging with some of the most impressive solo work and international collaborations this city has seen in some time. 

Some say it's thanks to Drake that all of this is happening, and there's no doubt the young rap and R&B players gained some confidence from his global championing. But, what this group is doing, this fearless flavour of soul that they're producing together in creative, incestuous music communities, is now so plentiful it's overflowing at the city's seams. They need a name, really - because they're not OVO, but they could end up comparable.

One of those artists is Daniel Caesar - a 20 year-old singer-songwriter rolling with the likes of Toronto producers Frank Dukes and River Tiber, dropping short, emotive bodies of work that affirm his status as one of the ones to watch in the soul-folk space. Just a few weeks ago, Caesar released his second EP, Pilgrim's Paradise - a powerful seven-song release that includes six originals (ranging from impassioned soul to Frank Ocean-esque hip-hop collabs) and "Streetcars," a Toronto-spun cover of Kanye West's "Streetlights." 

After one listen to this EP, there's no doubt that Caesar could be one of the most important R&B storytellers in Toronto right now. And with the nurturing and support of his crew, his community - it's safe to say they'll see to it that we hear plenty more from him (and the rest of them) soon.

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