Published Apr 07, 2016Alternative R&B singer Christopher Gallant — or Gallant, for short — takes us on a thrilling journey with his debut LP, Ology, the successor to his 2014 EP Zebra. Ology is an R&B album at heart, but it's got electronic overtones, and flirts with a series of other genres. The singer's dynamic falsetto finds its way into your soul, not unlike that of Maxwell or D'Angelo.
Gallant studied music at New York University before heading to Los Angeles. There, he met his current manager, Jake Udell, who discovered EDM acts like Zhu and Krewella before taking a shine to the singer's high-pitched vocals and effortless hooks.
Gallant's previous singles, "Weight in Gold" and "Skipping Stones," featuring Jhené Aiko, catapulted him to a new level of commercial success. On Ology, Aiko is the only guest singer; Gallant has called the writing and recording of the album an "organic" process.
"I've waited a long time to say everything that I'm saying on this album, and it's terrifying to think that people will hear it," stressed Gallant in a press release, and it makes sense. Though we're accustomed to seeing Gallant as a melancholy, "sad faced" artist (see the album art), he channels a full spectrum of heavy emotions here, complemented by brilliant songwriting — especially on highlight "Talking to Myself."
Ology opens with silence, builds to a climax, and ends with a satisfyingly fizzy electronic outro, and though there's a lot of meaning packed into its runtime, the album isn't always entirely coherent — certain songs seem out of place, or perhaps just placed in the wrong order — but that's a minor quibble. Ology's idiosyncrasies and emotional exhibitionism make for a genuinely honest, captivating listen. (Independent)