There's nothing more important and profound than a safe space. A hub, however small or rare, that you can truly exist in. Whether it's church, a festival grounds, a supermarket or a crowded bar with three dollar shots, the details of that haven are yours authentically, but they're also telling. There, in a specific time and place, you're you. But in that same regard, being "you" should never have to be a privilege. "You" shouldn't need to find refuge solely within business hours and a parking meter.

The capacity to congregate in united circles of likeness and the existence of representation in public settings will never truly be understood by the advantaged. When you're effortlessly surrounded by a similar reflection in your unconscious sauntering through life's most tedious details, it's difficult to understand how unsafe the world is without a uniform of conformity. They'll never feel what the families of the victims of the Orlando mass shooting felt earlier this month or the congregation of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church felt last summer. What they're still feeling after sacred places were compromised. For within the overwhelming mainstream vanilla-doused conservative agenda, communities and diaspora continue to be ostracised and threatened by what Jesse Williams recently referred to as the "invention of whiteness" in his recent viral BET acceptance speech. This idea of what the public should look and be and act and sound like is an illusion. Ownership of social space isn't real. So take up room.

Freetown Sound is a cultural centre where personal ideas prevail, political priorities are articulated and spiritual theories are questioned. Dev Hynes has delivered his third studio album as Blood Orange, focused solely on the reclaiming of space for the marginalised and misunderstood. "My album is for everyone told they're not black enough, too black, too queer, not queer the right way...it's a clapback," Hynes stated in a telling interview, which puts the layered 17-track expansive avant-pop opus in perspective, upon its surprise arrival.

Within the confines of euphoric tropical dance grooves, Hynes has assembled his own community, based predominantly of women of colour. Through song, they mourn, celebrate, learn and support each other and their vision to depict honest accounts of their borderless global narrative, particularly surrounding race and sexuality. And while Dev is the master of many layers, (taking on the executive producer, lead singer and master mixer roles on Freetown Sound,) he offers room for women like Nelly Furtado, Kelsey Lu, Empress Of and Atlanta-based poet Ashlee Haze, (whose poem 'For Colored Girls' on the importance of representation, was sampled on the album opener,) to direct their unapologetic power outward.

The first minute of the dynamic LP offers Hynes' intersectional mantra, which is set through Haze's poesy, proving that Dev may just be the most authentic male feminist in music. "I didn’t grow up to be you but I did grow up to be me & in love with who this woman is. To be a woman playing a man's game & not be apologetic about any of it," Ashlee preaches. Freetown Sound's broad view is supported further by clips from Marlon Riggs' 1994 documentary, Black is...Black Ain't and quotes from Ta-Nehisi Coates, who outlines the very real conflict he faces when figuring out what to wear as a black man, to not threaten or intimidate white people who can't grasp the implications of their micro-aggressions. "How was I gonna wear my pants?" he speaks. "What shoes was I gonna wear? Who was I gonna walk with to school?"

It's a powerful thing when reports that would never have surfaced had not a safe place been made public, make one of the most sincere sonic statements of the year.