ThEESatisfaction – EarthEE
ThEESatisfaction are a smoky alternative R&B duo from Seattle who first caught the attention of the venerable Sub Pop label through a guest appearance on Shabazz Palace’s modern classic Black Up. EarthEE, the duo’s second album, brings them out from the shadow of their origins and establishes them as a laid-back amalgamation of 70s jazz, soul, and afro-funk. There aren’t many clear-cut hooks here, just a lot of hand drums and throbbing bass – in some places, courtesy of supreme bass player Meshelle Ndegeocello. Soft synth work abounds, providing a cushion between the insistent grab of the bass and the on-the-edge-of-space vocals of Catherine Harris-White. “No GMO”, “Planet For Sale”, “Blandland”, and “Post Black Anyway” all speak to the politics lurking beneath the chilled-out vibe, marking them out as significantly more interesting than your average alt-R&B project. EarthEE makes a great soundtrack for all sorts of fun activities, although the songs seem to run together after a while.