Sultry and yet packing enough of a punch to knock you on your backside if you aren’t expecting as much muscularity from a bluesy temptress this autumn season, the lead vocal Linda Imperial has for us in her new single “I Found Me” is so angst-ridden, but in all honesty, it’s the biggest source of vitality in the whole of the song. Around every corner, no matter how tight a curve the beat might present her, Imperial is a vision of what pop/rock vocalists should be in this track, and despite the seemingly impossible versatility required to properly perform a composition as riddled with sonic peaks and valleys as this number is, there’s not a second of audio here that sounds unpolished, unprepared or unfocused in the least.
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Beyond Imperial’s singing in this song, the construction of “I Found Me” is, at its core, as provocative as any of the lyrics she sings to us are. In the chorus, it’s clear that she chose to drop this single right now to exhibit just how much attack she still has when she steps inside of the booth, which, for an artist who has as much experience in this game as she does, is something that any critic should be more than a little impressed with. She isn’t afraid to push herself when she stands to benefit from the meticulousness of the material as a creative and as a performer, and for this track, we’re seeing her moxie at what could be its most unfiltered and honest to date.
This lyricism is generally very brooding, but had a different singer been tasked with bringing it to life in the same capacity that Linda Imperial has, I don’t know whether they would have been successful or not. She puts her own stamp on “I Found Me” right out of the box, and while it seems she hasn’t had a problem wearing her influences on her sleeve in some of the past songs she’s recorded, I think her lineage is somewhat obscured here. Imperial doesn’t want to give us a history rundown in this track, and even when she’s retrospective with her verse, her overall attitude is one of a player who wants to evolve and grow out of her present sound more than she desires to retain a streamlined signature style.
If you’ve never heard this singer/songwriter go to town on a fundamentally classic groove prior to this most recent release, I think that “I Found Me” is a single that’s going to turn you into a genuine Linda Imperial fan before this year has come to an end. She’s been flying under the radar of mainstream critics and audiences for too long now, but in this performance, she turns in the kind of mainstream-caliber material that her most devoted disciples have been waiting for since the beginning. I’m very impressed with her constant development, and with “I Found Me,” she might breakthrough to a larger platform than she had with past stabs at the spotlight.