Tuesday, October 24, 2006

New Music Tuesday - John Legend

I was a big fan of John Legend's 2004 debut Get Lifted. The neo-soulster was a friend of Kanye West, who executive produced the album as well as quite a few of the tracks. It was filled with old school vibes, lovely piano and arrangements that harked back to the '70s soul of Stevie and Smokey and Marvin and Donny. I loved the warm and languid feeling of it all, and was an even bigger fan of his controlled vocals - no histrionics or fitting thirty notes into a riff here. The follow up hits stores today. Called Once Again, I've had a chance to give it one listen today, and my first impressions are good. It picks up where Get Lifted left off, but this time around it seems a bit bigger. Kanye, Will I Am, Raphael Sadiq, Craig Street and the splendidly monikered Devo Springsteen handle the production, with John taking on all the lyrical duties. There is a bit of rock riffing, lots of balladry and a few mid tempo shufflers, two of which are today's offerings. Stereo is rooted in the hip hop rhythms of today, while P.D.A. (We Just Don't Care) is a bit slicker and discofied.

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