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Photo: Daniel Kestenbaum
Photo: Daniel Kestenbaum

LOONY Makes It All Clear On Her Self-Titled Debut

Anchoring genre diversions with a powerful and soulful voice, the R&B songwriter is ready to become your new favourite singer. 

by Ben Boddez

Even if it’s not their debut full-length, a self-titled project often feels like the time for a musician to put the definitive stamp down on their artistic identity – or to make it their most personal lyrically, if they’re experimental enough to scoff at the term ‘definitive stamp.’ Soulful Scarborough vocalist LOONY’s addition to the self-titled canon is actually a little bit of both. After a series of EPs dating back to 2018, LOONY arrives fully formed with striking vocals and a willingness to use them over everything from funk backdrops to sparse acoustic chords, telling a variety of stories about a troubled relationship that she’ll keep trying to fix until it kills her.

You’ll understand that the sonic journeys the project will take you on will be delightfully unpredictable as soon as layered harmonies and the infectious push and pull of a ’70s funk instrumental, building up the tension with well-placed rhythmic silences, falls away into a driving stomp-clap drumbeat and ghostly backing vocals before the second track has even concluded. The anchor of it all is LOONY’s voice, a self-assured and powerful alto that’s malleable enough to unleash wild vocal runs, belted show-stopper notes, and airy moments to build drama whenever they’re needed.

Shining brightest in pop-soul moments where she gets to show off both her vocals and her personality, it’s clear why she’s already been recognized by artists as wide-ranging as Elton John and 21 Savage. Get on board.