“People Get Ready” by Bill Crews and The Crews Cartel

As important as any of the lyrics to his new cover “People Get Ready” are, the beats that adorn every pulsing stitch of rhythm in this hot track courtesy of Bill Crews and The Crews Cartel are perhaps more expressive than they need to be, but they’re getting this band and its leading man a lot of attention this September. A classic track in its own right, “People Get Ready” is a juggernaut of texture and tonality comprised of simplistic melodies and synthetic harmonies as supple as they are profound, and this September, the song is getting a second wind thanks to the fans keeping it in high demand.

The melody here is steeped more in folk aesthetics than it is pop, but the hybridity of elements doesn’t translate as being overly experimental at all; contrarily, I would say that it adds to the overall uniqueness of the track in general. Crews does plenty of experimenting throughout his discography, but in this song in particular, he applies as much attention as he can to the subtle components tying the harmony together, allowing for maximum fluidity without ever sacrificing any of the natural tonality in the track. It’s perfect as a single, and a great way of introducing his sound to us.

Ben Tankard’s contribution in the middle of the track helps to draw the rough edges between the first and second acts in “People Get Ready” together with a cosmopolitan swing even more potent than that of the drums. It’s a bit blunter in style than Crews’ singing is, but by juxtaposing their depth side by side as they ultimately did in this instance, I think we’re able to get a better handle on just how prolific a pair of vocalists they are.

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Conflict creates some of the best fireworks in experimental songs, and that’s exactly what’s happening in this recording. Although written long ago, “People Get Ready” has the look and feel of a modern standalone track in every way that matters. There’s a rich melodic energy to the beats that we’re never able to completely escape from, and beneath the showy cosmetics and old-school stylizations of the bass, there’s a ton of emotionality in the lyrics waiting for us to unfurl it. I haven’t heard enough of his work yet to know for certain, but if this is a good indication of what Bill Crews is going to produce in the future, he’s going to find a lot of success this year and beyond.

Bill Crews, alongside The Crews Cartel, is making a major impact on his scene right now, and with all of the momentum he gathered towards the end of 2023, it’s looking like this year is going to be just as busy as the last was. He’s got a lot of raw potential that still needs to be ironed out in the grander scheme of things, but at the rate he’s working, he’ll be in championship form a whole heck of a lot sooner than most of his contemporaries will be.

Anne Hollister

Anne Hollister

We do music reviews for Independent Artists and Publicists.

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