Worth the Wait
I met Julia Kwamya at a Radio Dept. show a few years ago. At the time, she went by the band name Germans. She had only released a few songs. I was already a fan because I had heard about her through Kurt Feldman, who produced some of her tracks. However, I had no idea she would be the opening act that night. When I arrived at the Cat’s Cradle, there were only a couple of songs left in her set. I quickly realized my mistake in not getting there earlier and was bummed that I wasn’t able to see her whole performance.
After the set, I was able to speak with Kwamya about her plans for upcoming releases. She had some new tracks she was going to lay down, but Feldman wasn’t going to produce, this time. It sounded as if it was planned and scheduled. Then, years went by, and no new music appeared. It wasn’t until 2021 that she finally came out with her first official EP, under her own name, Feel Good About Feeling Bad. The EP contained some of the same tracks, “Cruel” and “Wonderhow,” that she played that night and which had been circulating for years. The entire collection of songs is a welcome addition to her catalog, though, and the EP has a cohesive sound that would easily convince you all the songs were recorded together. With strong, disco and funk inspired bass lines (the bassist she played with at the Cat’s Cradle was really dynamic), the songs put the listener into a slow groove. Kwamya’s dreamy delivery has a richness that sets her apart from a lot of indie pop vocalists.
Since the release of this EP, Kwamya has put out another single, Little Red, which I hope means that more music is on the way. Dream pop that makes you want to dance hits a sweet spot for me, and it doesn’t get much better than this.