Published Sep 05, 2019Right from the throwback, gospel-inspired R&B album — the "Stairs of Progression" interlude — this effort from Toronto-based R&B duo TRP.P (pronounced "trippy") is clearly a different flex. While pHoenix Pagliacci is an extremely talented rapper — as seen through her time with Canadian rap supergroup the Sorority — it's as a singer-songwriter where she's truly able to soar. And fly she does: enabled by Truss's deep, layered and thoughtful production, 2TRP.P gets off the ground and largely stays aloft.
Indeed, this is no run-of-the-mill release — there's love infused in this project and it shows. 2TRP.P is a bundle of nerves, a burst of positive energy and an intent that's wholly genuine."MP4 Play" sees Pagliacci demonstrate that free-run soul, emboldened by some music box-inspired composition. The playful Evelyn "Champagne" King riff that is "Love, Calm Down," featuring Spazzy D, shows that Pagliacci's still got the hip-hop chops. "Chakra Con/NRG" soulfully sticks to the ribs (and heart), while the urgency of "Heart's Last Call" — backed by Afrobeat-esque production — is a straight-up aural pleasure.
It's tracks like the neo-soul of "Help Me" — in the vein of a Lalah Hathaway — that reveal the duo's depth and potential longevity in the scene. Truss's hip-hop-grounded, soul-elevated production reveals a highly underrated local producer, one that works from a jazz-trained background to take the soul to new levels. The critical question remains is if 2TRP.P is the official TRP.P sound, or if the duo is creatively still working that out. It's hard to say at this early point but either way things are looking up with this solid introduction. (Pirates Blend)