Last year, Baltimore soul singer, Joy Postell put out her debut album, Diaspora - an experimental exploration of the struggles of the African diaspora, the strength it can birth and what it would be like if these struggles were to disappear. On Diaspora, Postell showed her ability to play with a variety of sounds and textures, while still managing to piece together a complete narrative that does not subscribe to conventional structures.
The songs on her new EP, Back and Forth, rely on more traditional R&B templates, but Postell exhibits again that she considers her work in wholistic terms. The album's title reflects an embracing of the volatility that intimate relationships entail. Postell alternates between being opening up and yearning for a partner, and assuming a critical and defensive stance. Whichever side she falls on though, she maintains a firm hold on the larger picture of the give-and-pull of love.
The songs possess the lush, levelled arrangements of the best R&B and also often play with trappy production. These influences lead to a combination of lighter and rougher sonics, capturing the shifting emotions expressed in the lyrics. The album closes with "Say My Name", which is the open-armed return to your partner at the end of the day, despite whatever tensions it may have been filled with.