Ta-ku Adds To His Legacy with Debut Album ‘Songs To Come Home To’ [Album Review]

Kieran Kohorst
Credit: Jess Wharehinga

Of all the trends to define music in recent decades, none claimed such a hold on listeners as the soulection era, with its passionate collection of artists and producers contributing selflessly to the movement that lives on today. One of the most formative innovators of this niche genre is Ta-ku, who boasts production credits for Justin Timberlake, Childish Gambino, Masego and more, and continues to give soulection a pulse today. With his illustrious catalog in tow, Ta-ku has shared his debut album, Songs To Come Home To, completing a trilogy that has been in the works since 2013 that includes past projects Songs To Break Up To and Song To Make Up To. His most recent and conclusive offering is a shining reflection on where soulection currently stands, according to one of its chief contributors. As nostalgic as he is forward-thinking, STCHT follows the narrative of Ta-ku’s stepping away from the spotlight, told through serenading and easy-going tracks that makes his return all the more triumphant. 

For the revolutionary producer, STCHT is best explained as “a celebration” and “a full circle moment.” In a press release, he continues, describing the album as “an opportunity for me to express myself in the most complete way as an artist. A culmination of my musical & visual journey over the last decade. A homecoming and arrival to a place of calm and contentment. Featuring some of today’s most exciting new artists, as well as returning collaborators, all of whom I deeply admire, this marks my most ambitious project to date. This project is less about me & more about... us. A tribute to all those who make us who we are today. For the listeners, it's a warm welcome and an invitation to reflect on their own journeys too. Taking a nostalgic glance back at the experiences and choices that have shaped you. A sonic journey that evokes a sense of peace, gratitude & appreciation. A familiar feeling that 'home' has always given us. Home is rarely ever a place. It’s in a face, in the infinite galaxies summarized in the eyes where pupils are as endless as the cycle of life. I’ve heard the timbre of legacies carry on in living room laughter. I’ve seen memories laminate on kitchen floors where my mom and I danced to the rhythm of sizzling sustenance and motherland music. My heart constantly reminds me that geography has no hold on what I call home. I’ve found abodes in souls who fluently speak love in verb, in noun, in everything. Who’ve constructed sanctuaries with ears and mouths, Who take the shape of havens Who are physical glimpses of heaven on earth. Whose smile, with widening lips and glowing teeth beckon without a sound and yet still say, ‘Welcome, I’m so glad you’re home.’”

Joining Ta-ku on the album is an ensemble of guests fit for the occasion: Questlove, Xavier Omar, JMSN, Alayna and more contribute to the vision of Ta-ku. STCHT is music meant to be lived in, and nowhere is that easier than in lead single “SMILE.” The visuals work to this same effect, as the newly released lyric video for standout track “BETTER” soothes and elevates a listener. On his debut album, Ta-ku proves everything we already knew: his artistry sees no bounds, and there’s always a place in music for soulection tunes. 

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