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Single Review: “Take You Home” Benjamin Race

In his new single, the sinfully addictive “Take You Home,” rising R&B creator Benjamin Race puts an intense amount of energy into Ellison Kendrick’s vocal only to emerge from the studio with one of his most intimate and brooding performances to be recorded thus far. Race is vulnerable to no end here, and although there are numerous instances in which he makes it obvious just how unguarded he’s being with his words, it never seems as though he’s out of control emotionally or musically. There’s such a thing as compositional passion and exceptional maturity coexisting, but before hearing “Take You Home,” I wasn’t so sure. 

The melodic element in this track is really simple, much like the music video, and I don’t see any reason why it needed anything more than what it’s presented with. There’s something profound about possessing an ability to put something black and white onto paper and translate it into unblemished melodic wonderment, and for this task Race only needed his simple arrangement and Kendrick’s dynamite voice. That’s something a lot of his competitors would love to do themselves, but few will be able to pull it off when going to do so in their own work. 

I like the balance we find in this master mix, and had it not been as carefully structured as it was, I don’t know whether or not it would be as easy to break down the finer points of “Take You Home” as it is in this particular scenario.

Even though Race wasn’t working with a lot of elaborate details within the backdrop of the lyrics, I can appreciate his desire to be exceptionally dexterous in the style of the production – especially as it relates to turning something relatively small and understated into a sound larger than life itself. 

The lyrics in “Take You Home” seem to be inspired more by the music rather than the other way around, and where some critics would look at this as being a bit too rebellious a move for mainstream standards, I think it’s exactly the kind of attribute that is going to set apart the work of Benjamin Race from everyone else’s in the years to come. Every part of the material has a role to play, and when you consider the efficiencies of something like this very track alongside the virtuosity of this lead vocal from Kendrick, there’s no denying the future he has in this industry. 

If you’re into chill melodies that don’t require a lot of deep thinking to get involved with, I think Benjamin Race is a man you might want to connect with via the new single “Take You Home” and its companion video as soon as possible. Race is a talented songwriter who still has a lot to do if his goal is to break into the upper tier of pop royalty at some point in the next couple of years, but if this is a good encapsulation of his soul and charm on tape, I believe he’ll do just fine. 

Keith Middlebrooks




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