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Kendre Streeter’s “A Change”

Like the roar of an orchestra finding their melodic center, Kendre Streeter’s “A Change” fills the speakers with a heavenly warmth you won’t soon forget. Even in the instrumental introduction that precedes the first couple of verses, it’s possible for the audience to feel the smoldering passion growing all around us in the backing band. When Streeter starts to sing, it’s all about him right then and there – his voice instantly steals all of the attention away from the other elements in the mix and forces us to focus in on its detailed tone and emotional depth. As much as I appreciate the lyrical content in this track, had its creator been singing a recipe for meatloaf, something tells me that it would be just as powerful a listen thanks to the exceptional serenade at the center of the storm.

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There are a couple of different tempo shifts in “A Change,” but none of them feel abrasive – in fact, I actually think that the flow of this track’s rhythm is precisely why it has as much mainstream appeal as it does indie street cred. It can be difficult melding components from hip-hop, R&B and soul together (far more than any non-musician would ever think in today’s contemporarily hybrid culture), but for Streeter, he doesn’t focus nearly as much on aesthetical limitations as he does commonalities he can employ in the grander scheme of things. He’s very good at piecing together rough edges in the name of making a simple harmony more stirring, and here, he makes it difficult for fans and critics alike to dismiss his abilities as anything other than God-given.

The hook in “A Change” is really emotional in nature, but to be honest, there isn’t one stitch of audio in this single that I would describe as being devoid of the honest passion that comes from a poet bearing all of his soul to his audience. There’s nothing fake or synthetic about the delivery here – Kendre Streeter appears to go out of his way to make every one of his feelings tangible to us, either through lyricism or textured musicality, and for the most part, he hits it out of the park every time. He’s still got a couple of areas where additional development definitely wouldn’t hurt him, but overall, he’s demonstrating a lot more skill than some of the mainstream chart-toppers have been in 2020.

Kendre Streeter’s “A Change” concludes with the same labored gusto that it first begins with, although at the end of its run I think fans are a lot more likely to feel connected with this singer/songwriter than they did prior to hitting the play button. Although the nightly news has been filled with unsettling soundbites about tragedy and terror in the streets, music like this is reminding us all that solidarity can come through the sonic ethers a lot easier than it can any other realm of American life. Streeter is doing his part to keep the world chill this June, and with “A Change,” he inspires a lot more than good vibes.

Mindy McCall

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