Kalum – “Up and Away”

Dance, Pop, R&B, UK Asian

Score: 7.1

In this bizarre, almost Renaissance-age landscape in British Asian music, enter 19 year old Kalum with his debut single proving to be a bewilderingly beautiful mess of frustrating brilliance. Why so frustrating? Well, because the boy really struggles to sing. Hey, that happens – goodness knows Britney can barely hum a tune. That’s where the producer needs to step in, chuck on lashings of vocal effects and fill it out with studio magic. That doesn’t happen on “Up and Away” – which is basically a Jason Derulo song. Note this well: we mean that in terms of quality level, because it is a superbly written pop song, truly. Hear it just twice, and it will stay with you for a week. Soaring melodies, uplifting refrains, it’s inspirational stuff (Jay Sean could probably do with a hit like this). Which makes it even more galling that it just doesn’t sound professional enough, because it clearly deserves a bigger platform, thus making this a real missed opportunity – this could have been a classic.

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