Tuesday, February 17, 2009

John Legend, Q-Tip and still Ben Folds

This one's a bit overdue as I clearly haven't been updating much lately. Fortunately, I haven't gotten into any newer albums so these 3 are still in heavy rotation. First up John Legend's Evolver. Wow, thank god mp3's don't wear out cuz I definitely would have worn out the tape on a few of these tracks. Overall I think the album is quite good, however a few tracks are simply stellar. My fave of the bunch has been Quickly feat. Brandy. Something about when she comes in that just gets me and when they hit the chorus in harmony I'm good to go.

Thanks to one of my co-workers I didn't overlook Q-tip's last solo joint The Renaissance any longer! Something about his past solo efforts had made me overlook this one initially, but boy am I glad that didn't last too long. Bam! This album is a tour-de-force for the man who used to be the better known half of A Tribe Called Quest's MC duo. The track We Fight, We Love featuring Raphael Saadiq is one of my favorites as Tip's smooth verses blend seamlessly with Saadiq's chorus. The gem though has to be You. A tale of deception where the production, content and lyrics all showcase Tip's masterful style. You gotta feel him on this one and maybe even feel for him.

Last but certainly not least Ben Folds Fall '08 record Way To Normal. I just cannot seem to get this one out of my playlists! And while overall this is probably not my favorite Ben Folds record a few of the cuts on it are just fantastic. As many have noted this record comes on the heels of a divorce and is certainly filled with quite a bit of anger. Cuts like Bitch Went Nuts and Brainwascht clearly show his need to vent some of his anger. In contrast Cologne is a tender ballad where we see the emotional side of living such a rollercoaster life. I'm a big fan of sleepers The Frown Song and Free Coffee. Something about the soundscapes and emotions on those two cuts just gets me. I balked at $50 to see him last fall with Missy Higgins and then regretted it all the way to the bank. Thankfully I got a second chance and will be checking out his show at The Fox Theater Oakland!