EP Review: Sabreen Islam – room service

Sabreen Islam showcases her endearing, poignant songwriting on her gorgeous debut EP room service

Rising Bengali-New Zealand singer-songwriter Sabreen Islam has spent the last few years steadily establishing her affable brand of thoughtful indie pop, laced full of the artist’s endearing personality and soft, rousing appeal. These releases have led us to now, with the release of the artist’s debut EP room service, the most exciting landmark from the artist to date and a chance to see the most fully-formed showcase of the artist’s sound to date.

The EP opens with ‘all these dreams’, a wistful and optimistic release that really sets the tone for the collection of tracks. The softness of the artist’s vocals and the conversational nature of the lyrics makes for an intimate feeling listening experience that almost feels like you’re sat with the artist yourself, as she pours out her thoughts and fears over a lush, stripped-back instrumental.

‘still love you’ is one of the lead singles from the EP and is a fun, upbeat track about longing for a crush from the past. There is a childish sense of adventure in the narrative and the vocals that feels really endearing and nostalgic throughout, with the artist’s unique charm and distinctive appeal shining through this track from all angles.

This is followed up by ‘you will never see this’, another track that showcases how Sabreen’s sound can feel soft and powerful in equal measure. The track has a really relatable and cutting edge to it, with the artist discussing the more painful intricacies of a break up and the toll that it has on the small insignificant parts of life.

Speaking of tracks that are vulnerable and relatable, ‘victory’ provides the album with its most sobering bout of honesty and emotion. This is Sabreen’s most intimate release to date and is packed full of thoughtful lyrics, a gorgeous, immersive instrumental, and a real atmospheric sense of heart and earnesty that works perfectly on the track.

The EP’s title track is next, and sees the artist tap into her more catchy and creative sensibilities, boasting a unique soundscape and more of the artist’s immersive writing. The track is packed full of fun moments and quirks, as are so many of these tracks.

Finally, things close out with ‘fields’, another more stripped-back and thoughtful addition to the EP. On a collection of tracks that is full of immersive and serene moments, it is no surprise that it closes out with one. More of the artist’s musings about love, life and growing up are on display here, and these themes tie the EP together and give it a sense of character and life.

On the whole, room service is something of a coming-of-age EP for Sabreen Islam, as she navigates through this period of her life and the pitfalls that come with it. There are triumphs, there a low points, but importantly, it all feels authentic and real, a lived, relatable experience that many will be able to pull from and resonate with. The sound itself is endearing and packed full of creative, emotional moments, articulating Sabreen’s vision as well as her words do. The EP is a really encouraging release from the artist and one that does a great job of capturing the likeable appeal of her sound. If you’re not familiar with Sabreen Islam or her sound, this is a great place to start.