The fabricated sound of dance/trance music always has the potential to be stimulating. This potential can often turn lethal when the softer side of trance music is employed. Also with the possibility of quality over quantity, an equation still remains: the music consumer may look upon the album with apathy. Even when the production qualities are great, synthesizer sounds are blissful, and songs are executed excellently, some albums will still wear a bit thin. Such is the case with Nadia Ali’s debut album, which fails in memorability simply because of a lack of punch. What it does not fail in, however, is capturing the listener with heart-felt lyrics, and smooth sailing.
Embers is an oddly appealing album. For some inexplicable reason, no matter how many times I listened to it, I wanted more. There was something magnetizing about the Pakistani American singer Nadia Ali. There was something celestial in the way her exotic vocals melted into calm beats and soft electronics. It was like waking up and finally feeling the pulse of the world, listening to its breath. There was an unmistakably beautiful quality to the sounds which burst out of the blue. Some say that listening to music can instill a spiritual encounter, and if such is the case, Embers certainly seems like a brush with Heaven. Or maybe only a handful of the songs are that wonderful and the rest are forgettable. Who cares, it was blissful.
So what if the album is somewhat typical dance music, this one stirs your soul. It is like bumping into that sweet heart (ten years later) that you never had the guts to ask out, but then you finally tell her how hot she is, and then violent kissing happens. This album is your best friend, it is that dog or cat that you always wanted. Give it the time it deserves, and it will grow on you like hair on a man’s chest or like something else on a girl. However, due to its regrettable typicality, despite the controlling charm of Nadia Ali, the album is too average to stick in memory. Directly in the middle of songs, they could have switched to soft rock, and no one would have noticed the difference. So if it is difference you are seeking, you will leave empty-handed. If you want to feel music, however, you will feel remarkably different after listening to Embers.