Melbourne producer Illstrtd has teamed up with Afro-Aus artist Françoistunes have combined their love of soul with their electronic and hip/hop backgrounds. The result is “Real Love”, a bright, impassioned and groovy track that expertly mixes and melds a variety of genres.
Illstrtd’s electronic style is based on booming synths, strong rhythms and a whole lot of reverb. On “Real Love”, this is all on display. However, where “Real Love” diverges from his other works is in its strong R&B and Soul influences. The opening introduction is fit with slow chords that reverberate out to create a wide soundscape and Françoistunes’ gentle hook, which can only be described as soulful. The beat slowly builds, starting with a simple bassline and faint clicks in the background, to lead into Françoistunes’ first verse. Lyrically, the track is strong, telling an emotional story of love and his search for it. This emotion becomes a driving force in the track, emphasised when Illstrtd strips away many of the musical layers during the hook. This not only emphasised Françoistunes’ vocals, but also the harmonising keyboard work that comes in over the top. Following the hook, the rhythmic elements blast the listener as Illstrtd uses his Flume like synths on the offbeat of his drum machines to create a dynamic and groovy drop. It is bizarre that these electronic and soul elements can come together so well, but Illstrtd mixes them in such a way that there is a fun, dance-ready R&B sentimentality to the track.
On the creation of the track, Illstrtd said:
“‘Real Love’ came together super organically with François - I’ve been a huge fan of his for a minute and it was great to finally work with him on something. The whole process felt fun and easy, we literally finished the first demo of this song in one day writing session in the studio. I took it away and chipped away at the production, we went back and forth online until we felt it was perfect. I’m really proud of this one and I really feel like I’m pushing my sound forward with every release, experimenting more with combining soul, R&B and electronic influences”.
“Real Love” is out today. Listen here: https://soundcloud.com/berichrecords/illstrtd-real-love-ft-francoistunes-1/s-29IpA