Kali Uchis’ music is a fusion of pop, soul, R&B, and Latin music, and her lyrics often touch on themes of love, heartbreak, and self-empowerment. Her lyrics are meant to inspire young women to be independent thinkers and break free from limitations by finding inner strength. In a way, she sings to her past self, which is meant to be liberating for other Latinas like her. She is heavily included by powerful Latina singers/icons including Celia Cruz, Salma Kayek, La Lupe, Selena and Shakira.
Her long-awaited third full-length studio album Red Moon in Venus is a stunning album that showcases the best of Kali Uchis’ musical talents. The record is a beautiful work full of romantic scenes. The title is an astrological reference, a moon in Venus (which governs your adoration) inclines you toward cultivating an art of living that’s pleasing to yourself, as well as to your loved ones. A blood moon or red moon symbolizes beginnings, endings, culminations, and clean slates.
The brief intro song In My Garden sets the scene for the album with a love letter which plays into I Wish You Roses, a song gushing with declarations of love. In the music video Kali is seen lying in a bed of pink flowers, referencing the movie American Beauty where an older man obsesses over a young girl. Kali reclaims the scene by understanding the power of her sex appeal and expressing her femininity rather than conforming to patriarchal norms.
You can certainly hear Omar Apollo’s influence on the production in Worth the Wait. This song is essentially about being wildly attracted to your partner. She has created her own modern take in Love Between referencing and drawing a lot of inspiration from a soul classic by The Temprees. All Mine is a chill song about sort of being committed to your partner, they’re the only person you want to be with and they feel the same.
The first half of the album portrays the early stages of a relationship. However, this phase is short-lived, the album progresses into a more intricate and inexplicable exploration of love’s different phases. Through love’s intense waves Kali Uchis doesn’t lose sight of reality, she explores feelings of despair and longing with equal intensity. She paints a full picture of a relationship, not just the best moments but the insecure moments as well.
The track Fantasy, which features Don Toliver her romantic partner, is an Afropop dance tune that depicts the end of the infatuation that was present in the first half of the album. The song examines love in its most carefree form, with Uchis pleading for her partner to hold onto her and keep the fantasy alive, the honeymoon phase doesn’t last forever. In Como Te Quire Yo she tells her partner she’d rather not fight, let’s just make up. She teases an ex-partner about their new lover in Hasta Cuando.
In the upbeat and funky Endlessly she sings about obsessive and all-consuming love. The song Moral Conscience features psychedelic beats and contains a message about processing a relationship with themes of introspection and perhaps regret.
In Blue a smooth jazz-pop track, she sings about praying for an angel to bring her back to a lover. Deserve Me is another R&B inspried track, the overall message is that it’s better to be alone than to remain in a toxic situation. Kali has mentioned before the inequality that she faces as a Latina woman. Facing inequality is something that women across cultures face. This song inspires women to not stand for mistreatment, especially when women are often held to higher standards than men in relationships.
The album’s standout track, Moonlight, uses the concept of the moon in astrology as a symbol of inner emotional wisdom and divine femininity. It urges listeners to let go of the weight of love and surrender to its transcendence. This song provides a path to embracing the feminine energy that life has to offer. The album closes out with Happy Now an upbeat and lighthearted song.
Kali Uchis uses her songs as a warning for lovers to take notice and assert their voice in their relationships. She has confidence in balancing being a strong, independent woman and a committed lover. She emphasizes the importance of healing and reaffirms her gentle but unwavering control over her lover and their future. She uses her emotive voice between the diverse styles of music showcased in Red Moon in Venus. This album is about embracing every phase of love and allowing it to impact you deeply. It brings us through the full experience of the power of love, capturing its joys and sorrows with equal intensity.
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