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“Less is more” is an adage that seems to have become something of a mantra in the R&B world of late.

Everything has been stripped back to the bare minimum and, with it, so has the emotional masks of the artists themselves (though, ironically, many of them do still try to cultivate an air of mystery about them, despite being so open emotionally).

‘Tried Love’, the latest single from Scottish producer A-L-X, takes this idea and brings it out of the darkness a tad, giving it a dash of dance floor funk.

It’s just downright impressive how much is packed into ‘Tried Love’ whilst still keeping that minimal, late-night R&B feel and the emotional openness, allowing everything space to breathe.

It’s sultry and groovy whilst not overshadowing the tenderness and deep-seated melancholy at the song’s heart, intimated in those gorgeous harmonies.

It’s an odd beast in that it can be read both ways; a song that you can see as the soundtrack to lovers locking eyes across a dance floor but also the fallout of a break-up.

If ‘Tried Love’ is anything to go by, A-L-X, as both a producer and performer, is clearly at the top of his game, ready to burst out from the underground.

Words by Chris Taylor

Tipped by Ben Ryder-Smith

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