Blending her disco inspired roots with a smooth R&B sound, musician Gavin Turek creates shimmery, soulful downbeat grooves with her debut album release, Madame Gold. Turek’s new release dances along sonic lines, bouncing between genres and enriched by vivacious vocal harmonies. With an understated elegance and throwback vibes, Madame Gold intersects sonically with past inspirations, from Donna Summers to Curtis Mayfield, and present day influences, such as Tame Impala.
“We took a more experimental route while creating the hybrid of soul and pop I’m known for, in order capture the inner transformation that was happening in me. I didn’t want to repeat what I did before,” said Gavin about the sonic direction of the album.
Eclectic and uninhibited, the album ebbs and flows like a rushing river with beautiful blooming flowers all along the banks. While certain tracks seem to pour into one another, others stand alone in tempo and cadence such as the track, “Whisper” which is led by a heartwarming interview of Turek’s mother. All the tunes distill a sense of vulnerability as Turek writes from the heart and digs deep inside herself to expel a complex array of emotion and experience from pain, loss, confusion, love and hope. Whether releasing personal turmoil or rising to the heights of inner strength, the album exudes a positive emblem of perseverance and love.
In addition to showcasing her writing skills, Turek effortlessly delivers strong and silky vocals that lay lusciously over full bodied melodies and hypnotic beats. With other guest artists contributing vocally, the album flows between personal monologues and collective truths. Never too fast, loud or demure, the album is a perfect middle ground for someone needing mood music for chill night out or a solitary night in. Whichever activity it spurs, the album is driven by underlying currents of contemplation and boundless sound.
Capitalizing on the strength she found in her lyrics, Turek takes her album to new artistic heights with the music video for “Hero.” The visual piece captures Turek lost in daydream as she stares at a captivating piece of art in an empty museum — a Black Panther clad young man is the only other soul around as Turek gets lost in her imagination. In her vision, a beautiful, crime fighting young woman in a gold sequence disco dress, Madame Gold, escapes precarious situations. This alter ego encapsulates the confidence and independence locked away inside every individual, and the imaginative short film creates an inspiring story arch as Turek realizes her daydream is actually an internal reality. Inspiration for the video came from a tough year and Turek’s determination to overcome the pandemic blues.
“At the height of the pandemic, I found myself depleted and discouraged, unsure how to move forward. One fateful day, I tuned in for an “artist talk” given by one of my favorite visual artists, Renee Cox,” notes Turek. “Her work and encouraging words were exactly what I needed to be reminded of who I was: a hero … the ‘HERO’ music film is meant to inspire people, especially women who feel lost and out of touch with their personal strength, to become their own heroes and save themselves instead of waiting for someone else.”
The visual concept and execution of the video’s creative direction came from Turek and was brought to life with the help of director Josh Sondock.
From lively performances, influence from her musically inclined parents to her own professional catalog working in Los Angeles and collaborating with other producers and musicians, Gavin Turek has been carving out a bright and fruitful path for herself, illuminated even more so by the release of Madame Gold.
Words: Patti Sanchez