Ladan Hussein, known on stage as Cold Specks has returned with her most personal work yet. The artist recognized for her twistedly enthralling lyrics and distinctive soulful voice, has dug deep and returned to her roots. In this masterful body of work, Cold Specks intimately explores her identity as a Somali-Canadian woman. She's unveiled and allowed herself to stretch her palette thematically. The rawness that's deemed Cold Specks a dark soul, has revealed itself to be a cathartic after glow, illuminating the sort of light born through healing.
Like waves thrashing in a chaotic sea in the middle of nowhere, Fool's Paradise encapsulates the naturalness of existing during difficult times. We find Ladan rejoicing the survival of those she loves while mourning for the sorrow that continues to linger after it has beckoned its doom. Far gentler than her electrifying sophomore Neuroplasticity and her midnight debut I Predict A Graceful Expulsion, Cold Specks has honed her artistic agency and has invited you to bear witness.
During the creation of Fool's Paradise, Ladan became obsessed with pre-war Mogadishu, her family's home city and Somalia's capital while living in Toronto. "I just fell in love with the idea of a city I'd never known, this beautiful city by the beach, I tried to imagine what it looked like before the war," she remembers.
The record opens with Ladan's emotive croon in "Fool's Paradise" a song dedicated to a semi-mythical Somali queen named Araweelo. For the first time, Cold Specks sings in Somali, chanting "Araweelo," a queen of female empowerment who was also known to castrate male prisoners. Throughout centuries, the glorious queen would either be painted as a heroine or misandrist in folklore. Araweelo is a polarizing dream, like Cold Specks, always dangling between varying abstracts. With melodic grace, Cold Specks sings in "Fool's Paradise" a Somali idiom, "kala garo naftaada iyo laftaada" which translates in English to "understand the differenc