“It just needs to be true,” Canadian R&B Neo-soul and Afro-beat artist Zenesoul says, as she looks for “That Love” in her newest single — available now.
“When I first heard the beat from my producer, Larumadeit, I instantly thought of that nostalgic type of love people had in the past,” Zenesoul — Angie Akhinagba — shares of the song teeming with the lush, enveloping sound that’s all her own. “Think: 90s Black love culture found in movies, family TV shows, and R&B music of the time.
“And this is how I usually write… Not with pen and paper, but with hearing the music, getting a theme or a vibe in mind, and then singing melodies and lyrics to expand it into a song.”
Born in Nigeria and based in Toronto, Zenesoul (zen-soul) released her debut EP, Worth, in 2019. Since then, a steady stream of ceiling-shattering singles — including “Love and Be Loved,” “Sunday,” and “I Will Not Be Silenced” — succeeded 2020’s premiere full-length, Coffee.
“My previous project, Coffee, took listeners through my tribulations with toxic love,” Zenesoul expands. “Since then, I’d made a pact to only search for the best love, so the song became a manifestation of the love I wanted in my life after such hard times dealing with it in the past.
“So in the lyrics of ‘That Love,’ I explain I’m no longer settling for an inferior love anymore…” she continues. “I will only love someone that loves me the same way and, since I”m not perfect, their love doesn’t need to be either.
“It just,” she underscores, “needs to be true.”
With more than 875,000k streams across platforms, Zenesoul has performed at the This is Brampton: NXNE music festival, and garnered multiple features across playlists, blogs, and podcasts — including CTV Morning Live, Earmilk, Rory from the Joe Budden Podcast and R&B Radar.