Tim Qualls: “Say You Love Me” – effortlessly soulful and unaffected

A mix of Indie Pop and Soul, Tim Qualls attributes his mixed musical genre to his attendance as a Sam Houston State music student and frequenter of open mics around Huntsville and Houston. After a 5 year break, the frequently nominated and award-winning singer-songwriter has released his third EP, “Say You Love Me” on June 14th.

the EP cover
the EP cover

This guy has the chops to sing soul and blues music, and just about anything else, but here he puts his terrific voice and innate soul into 5 songs we can consider classic. Apart from Tim Qualls being blessed with an amazing voice, which is effortlessly soulful and unaffected. He’s also got great taste in material and is an excellent songwriter, as he proves here.

“Say You Love Me” takes the 70s soul sound to a new high – breezy, wonderfully melodic and luxurious music that creates an EP one can listen to in its entirety. The album is also brilliantly produced, creating minimalist characteristics in which each instrument is easily heard and nothing is overstated.

This recording is just perfect. From the very start to the very end this is a smooth delicious sailing. And five stars don’t do it justice. Tim Qualls’ soul voice is mixed with some deliciously retro grooves, some sexy horn sections and some tasty guitar parts, truly an alchemy that has been lacking from many a similar-styled release in recent years.

From the moment the title track, “Say You Love Me”, opens the EP, you know that this recording is another example of how good things happen to artists when they are independent and are not carried by a major label. How else would get to hear standout ballads like “I Drink” or “Take It Slow”.

Tim Qualls
Tim Qualls

Neither would you be able to savor the funky flavors of “Truth” or the swinging horn arrangements on “Easy To Conquer”.  This EP is filled with the velvet sounds of Tim Qualls – the kind of vibe you can relax to, tap your feet to or simply get up and groove to. It all totals up to amazing compositions, fantastic arrangements, musical nuances, voice and musical subtleties, great songs and an all-round inspired recording.

Tim Qualls has got a gritty soul voice, but he also has a very rich, and a very high range, which is showcased on this EP.  At the base, “Say You Love Me” makes you feel you are back in the seventies, if it were not for the modern day production qualities which keep you anchored in today’s smooth and trendy urban zone.

If you’re looking for some edgy hooks and tricky beats, this will not be the EP for you. However, if you’re looking for soothing, soul stirring vocals with deep emotional content and delicious soundscapes, “Say You Love Me” should definitely go into your emergency music kit!

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