Chloe x Halle

The Observer - The New Review - - Critics - Tara Joshi

With a be­guil­ing de­but al­bum, the sis­ters from At­lanta mentored by Bey­oncé are ready to spread their wings There’s the Midas touch, and then there’s get­ting signed to the la­bel of Bey­oncé Carter-Knowles. Sis­ters Chloe and Halle Bai­ley got a call from the artist her­self fol­low­ing their cover of her song Pretty Hurts back in 2013, and ever since she has been some­thing of a men­tor for the pair, tak­ing them on tour with her in 2016.

It would be do­ing the prodi­gious At­lanta R&B duo a huge dis­ser­vice, how­ever, to credit their rise as solely due to that stel­lar as­so­ci­a­tion. Chloe and Halle – now aged 20 and 18, re­spec­tively – won US net­work Ra­dio Dis­ney’s Next Big Thing award in 2012, and as teenagers were dili­gently carv­ing out a name for them­selves on YouTube.

Self-pro­duced and self-writ­ten, their im­pres­sive de­but al­bum, The Kids Are Al­right year. Full of glo­ri­ous am­bi­tion and po­tent, lilt­ing har­monies (com­plete with oc­ca­sional a cap­pella), it re­called the be­guil­ing beauty of Ibeyi, al­beit with more of a pop sheen. The videos for the al­bum – Happy With­out Me fea­tures Moon­light’s Ash­ton San­ders – have been op­u­lent too, full of that same beauty and un­apolo­getic sense of power.

“Our par­ents al­ways taught us … not to be afraid to dive in to do some­thing that may not be con­sid­ered things for lit­tle girls to be do­ing,” Halle said in an in­ter­view with Vul­ture ear­lier this year. “Once we put our foot in the door and shove it open, it’s ex­cit­ing for us to see peo­ple’s re­ac­tion. They re­alise that we can do this.”

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