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“Sweet Persuasion” from Destiny Malibu

A defiant melody opens up a treasure chest of tonality as we listen in one the first few bars of “Sweet Persuasion,” the brand new single from up and comer Destiny Malibu, but its initial stab at pop greatness is only a glimpse into the wall of harmonies that will soon come pouring out of the stereo in the next three minutes of play. With her cosmopolitan vocal at center stage, Malibu begins to spit a furious verse with an urgency that tells us danger is bearing down on her from the shadows. She wraps us up in enigmatic lyrics and tries to protect us from the onslaught of beats starting to enter the big picture, but even with her voice to act as our shield, we’re unable to avoid the sonic blows that are coming at us one after another. In “Sweet Persuasion,” Destiny Malibu will make it certain for anyone who is listening that she isn’t to be questioned in this next phase of her budding career – she’s ready for the primetime stage, and that’s made abundantly clear to us inside of this track’s first thirty-five seconds.

The percussion rises from the silence like a roaring, thunderous stampede of wild animals in a barren wasteland, its rhythm guiding the force of lyricism Malibu is spewing from behind the mic. Her dexterity is the saving grace of the rather shapeless verses in “Sweet Persuasion,” as far and few in between as they may be, and while I noted the experimental design of the hook in this track, it isn’t so far to the left of mainstream standards that the average listener wouldn’t be able to get into the groove that makes it such a fun listen time and time again. I can’t be 100% certain, only because I wasn’t in the room during the production process for this single, but I get the feeling that “Sweet Persuasion” was conceived with the intension of giving us a more vulnerable look into Destiny Malibu’s sound. She isn’t backing down from the provocative here at all, but at the same time, she’s doing all that she can to make us feel like her approach to pop melodies isn’t all that big a stretch from what all of us have wanted the genre to evolve into by this point in history.

As “Sweet Persuasion” concludes after several minutes of churning all within earshot in a vortex of harmony and heroic hook-play, the essence of the melody at the center of the chorus stays with us, even when the music has ceased to play. The stereophonic mix aside, this is quite the chill-inducing pop number from almost any angle we can analyze it from, and when taking into account it’s coming from an independent artist without the luxury of a major label bankroll behind her, this single is really something to be marveled at. Destiny Malibu isn’t at the top of the pop music heap yet, but once you’ve heard her new release for yourself, you’ll probably agree with me when I say she isn’t that far off from reaching the mountaintop.

Mindy McCall

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