Estelle California is an emerging singer-songwriter originally based in France. While learning piano at five years old, her ambitions were stunted due to childhood trauma; constant physical and mental familial abuse would cause her to temporarily lose her ability to speak. Despite this perturbing hurdle, she studied saxophone and dance in adolescence, and by age 26, regained her voice fully through consistent formal opera training. Her travels frequently led her to South Africa, and eventually, to permanent residence in California – a place she credits with especially reinvigorating her spirits, hence her artist name.
Following the success of her debut song, “Star,” Estelle has expanded upon that initial showcase with her current single, “Black is the True Light.” It was released just yesterday, and will be the second off her upcoming EP, My Name Is Freedom. Right away, I’m taken aback by her sense of command in her vocal tonality, as it promptly contrasts from a silky calm to a knife-like intensity in a matter of notes. What follows is a fitting prog rock accompaniment, chock full of wailing lead guitar melodies and earthy drum rhythms. As the song progresses, Estelle’s form feels increasingly liberated, which is thematically representative of her journey over the span of several years. I am definitely looking forward to how this direction will be further expressed in her future material.
Estelle California Socials: