Review: Mozez – Wings


It was the soul music and soft rock of American popular acts that had the biggest impact on London-based indie artist Mozez as a youngster. In his native Jamaica, however, roots, reggae and ska music nurtured a universally laid-back resonance to the landscape of music. He has often credited Marvin Gaye and Karen Carpenter as vocal influences, while the powerful messages in the lyrics of Bob Marley and John Lennon have been of inspirational value to him as a lyricist and songwriter. Finding his creative element in London during the mid-90s, at a time when ambient music and downtempo was the pulse of the city, Mozez joined the British musical duo Zero 7 after introductions were made while he was in the group Spirits. As the frontman vocalist, he co-wrote many of the duo’s earlier hits from their debut and sophomore albums, Simple Things and When It Falls, eventually touring with then unknown guest vocalists Sia and Sophie Barker. With critical reception on the heels of worldwide success with Zero 7, Mozez branched out to release his first solo album, So Still, with 14 tracks of flawless and deeply heartfelt songs that the artist had written over the years. While there have been ups and downs, often the story of talented artists wrapped up in a world of uncertainty known as the music industry, Mozez returns with the release of his follow-up studio album, Wings.

During the last decade, followers of Mozez are sure to realize that he has not been completely out of the limelight since the release of So Still. He frequently tours as the guest vocalist for the band Nightmares on Wax and also released the remix album Time Out. But as a perfectionist and independent artist in control of the sound of his music, time was the main ingredient needed to prepare the songs included on Wings. A combination of musical styles and flows, from dance electronica to reggae to the few resounding ballads, the body of work is indicative of well-rounded pacing and delivery. There’s an inescapable beauty of humanity in his lyrics on songs like “A Place Called Home” and “The Absolute” that call so many simple things into perspective. A world music element is present throughout the album on songs like “Hannah” which has a Mediterranean feel, or “Philia” with its downtempo reggae vibes. The album’s title track, “Wings”, and “Run River” flow with electronica influences while other songs like “Coloured Dreams”, “Planets” and “Broken Toy” are more laid-back of the soft rock variety. The composition entitled “Mirror Mirror” is a stellar standout in that it conjures up feelings of the next greatest of all time, while in a low key way pays homage to one of the greatest songwriters ever, Bill Withers. Listen closely to the vocal arrangement at the end of the tune and you will recognize the familiar melody of the 1972 funk classic “Use Me”. There are many other great moments on this Mozez album, something that the deeply soulful artist should be proud of.

Written by Mai Perkins

Originally from Los Angeles, Mai Perkins is living a genuine bona fide love affair with NYC and the music that keeps its spirit moving. While spending the majority of the last decade in Brooklyn, many of her adventures around the globe are documented on her blog: Mai On The Move!

Author’s rating for Wings

Pop Magazine’s official rating for Wings

Rating key
MASTERPIECE a must-have
SUPERB for heavy rotation
EXCELLENT a great achievement
VERY GOOD a respectable result
GOOD worth checking out
FAIR an average outcome
WEAK not convincing stuff
BAD an underwhelming effort
VERY BAD quite a waste
FAIL a total failure

Publishing Company for Print and Online Media

Write a Comment