Emanuel - Addiction
Press photo for Emanuel - Addiction

Emanuel – Addiction

Addiction is the second single from Canadian-Ethiopian artist Emanuel’s new release ‘Session 1: Disillusion‘, which was released on Juneteenth. A follow up from his first single, which was accompanied by an Idris Elba directed Coronavirus montage on an old telly. That scores some major points, doesn’t it?

Addiction is driven by swelling keys and washed-out guitar, throw-back bass with tone akin to James Jefferson, and is interspersed with distant, dubby reverbs and thick, splashy snare drum hits.

On it’s face ‘Addiction‘ feels upbeat, celebratory. Songs about nights out and “losing yourself” in bars are done to death. Fortunately, Addiction rests on the contrast between those run-of-the-mill verse lines and it’s powerful hyper-depressive chorus line.”I get a funny feeling when the plane goes down, it’s the same feeling when the drugs run out”. It instigates a pit-of-the-stomach, gut-wrenching feeling, tempered by Emanuel’s flawless, soulful vocal delivery and the faultless classic production.

There’s some stuff chucked in about floating down the Nile and being pharaohs and stuff, but let’s focus on the tremendous job Addiction does of glimpsing at stomach knotting reality through the tail end of a dying celebration. The production is suitably hazy, layered and heavily filtered. It sounds a million Canadian dollars. 

I can hear birds, the postman’s here, work exists, everyone’s going home. Don’t leave me, for god’s sake don’t leave me.