Deriving their name from a character in the movie Logan’s Run, who rebels against an underground society’s lethal demands, the Brooklyn-based trio Jessica 6 can trace their origins to when its primary songwriter Nomi Ruiz invited two of her bandmates in Hercules and Love Affair, Andrew Raposo and Morgan Wiley to jam together, after they all spent about a year or so of rather relentless touring in their then-primary musical project. And what initially began as fun, improvised, jam sessions between the trio, who bonded over their mutual love of late 80s and early 90s freestyle, underground hip-hop, Mary J. Blige, Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson had quickly became something very serious. And over the course of three or four years, the trio had received quite a a bit of attention across New York for a seductive electro pop sound that owes an equal debt to 80s and 90s house music, freestyle and Giorgio Moroder – and with the release of their 2011 full-length debut, See the Light, the trio started to receive national attention. The album’s first single “White Horse” received 2 million views on YouTube, and as a result caught the attention of Diesel’s artistic director, Nicola Formichetti, who’s best known collaborating with Lady Gaga. Formichetti featured Jessica 6′s Nomi Ruiz in a provocative campaign for Mugler Menswear and he used two of See the Light’s singles for Mugler Menswear’s runway show. He also styled Ruiz for a V Magazine feature article, in which she candidly spoke about being transgender in the music industry and about her art. Adding to a growing national and international profile, Madonna publicly cited Jessica 6 as an influence on MDNA.
July 28 will mark the release of Jessica’s 6 follow up EP, The Capricorn. Reportedly, the EP’s material thematically explores shame, pride and forgiveness. As it was explained through press notes, the EP’s first single “Down Low” produced by deep house stars Thodoris Triantafillou and CJ Jeff is “a meditation on shame’s relationship to seduction through the eyes of the seductress.” Arguably, the song may be the most overtly sexual song the group has ever released as the song pulsates with a repressed desire that’s just been exposed – there’s a sense of shame paired with the sense of it being absolutely right and necessary.
Sonically speaking tribal percussion is paired with layers of cascading synths, swirling electronics and Ruiz’s seductive cooing to craft an infectious, club banger of a song. Certainly, if I were DJ’ing in a club I’d be playing this song – right about now.