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Angel, Angelenah, Young n’ Silky, the artist currently known by Angel Davenport has gone through several name changes over the last couple of years or so. A member of the Rapper Chicks with Psalm One, the indecisive moniker audibles seemed to mark a period of change for the longtime Chicago MC. In that time, the music slowed down a bit, life took over and the lessons that came with it have manifested themselves on her latest project, the long-awaited solo offering, Sore But Grateful that dropped this week.

In many ways the title of this project underlines the time she’s spent away from releasing regular music. Moving fast in your twenties when involved in the music scene in any regard is easier than many think, and coming up in Chicago can be draining at times. Many go through it, much fewer persevere to find their own path not beholden to another’s clout or sphere of influence. For Davenport, it took physically removing herself from the one place she’d known longest to find her proper way forward. Musically she’s evolved as well. This collection may be a far-cry from the tongue lashings she provided back in Kimball House’s backyard summer’s ago, but the attitude is as prevalent as ever, if a bit tempered in spots. Making art true to one self is one of the hardest things a thoughtful person can hope to do, and here Angel proves herself. Sore But Grateful underlines the idea of everyone’s journey as an important one through the explanation of her own.

The album comes at an opportune time for Davenport as well, just ahead of her first time out on her own solo tour. It also comes at a time when her message seems even more ready than before to accepted by the world at large. With the work done and years of experience behind her, Angel Davenport has plenty waiting for her ahead, and Sore But Grateful fortifies that sentiment.

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