James Stephen – “Stronger With You”


A funky and soulful success from James Stephen, “Stronger With You” shows a stirring stylistic turn for the the Stockport, England-based artist. Whereas his past releases mainly emphasized a folk-forward Americana sound, “Stronger With You” embraces soul, funk, and R&B — influenced in particular by artists like Maze and Earth, Wind & Fire.

Stephen’s vocals are no stranger to bluesy fervency, evidenced by past efforts like “I Missed That Train.” “Stronger With You” brings that vocal passion into funkier mold, kickstarting the excitement immediately with brassy exuberance. “It’s been a long, long day,” he starts, echoing a sort of Hall & Oates charisma. Backing, wordless vocals aid the momentum, the fantasy-fulfilling bridge leading into the brightly infectious hook. The “crept into my life,” bridge plays with a passionate twist.

A stellar track that channels a funky charisma alongside lyrics about finding new love and having fun until the early morning hours, “Stronger With You” is an enjoyable release from James Stephen.

This track and others featured this month can be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Best of June 2022’ Spotify playlist.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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