On his new record "Companionship", London-based Soft-Rock, Soul and Disco artist Joel Sarakula keeps the mood easy and the grooves deep. Ten new songs see Sarakula develop a deeper, more introspective lyrical style from his previous works as he celebrates and laments friendships, love and loneliness. Interspersed with a few standout up-tempo tracks to keep the ship sailing, “Companionship” is a chill-out album and listening experience of the highest order.
"Companionship" opens with "Midnight Driver", a driving soft-rock fantasy where the narrator laments his partner's nocturnal habits: 'When she's coming up, it gets me down'. The Californian sun-kissed guitars, vocal stylings and percussion all help to set a cinematic mood which unsurprisingly also makes it a great driving song. On the introspective "King Of Clowns", Sarakula creates a pop song that calls to mind the craftmanship of Hall & Oates and Elvis Costello. Both an admission of guilt and an unapologetic statement of intent, his low vocal careens in the dangerous divide between self-pity and self-parody: "My bad decisions worked out for a while, I'd do my dance tried to make you smile, I'll never wise up it's just the way I am". These confessions all occur over a down-tempo funk groove complete with some vintage synthesizer musings that makes the track ready to be sampled for a hip-hop record.