– THE CHARM OFFENSIVE –
Five years after the release of his debut studio album Early Riser, Taylor (son of Bobby) McFerrin finally returns with new solo material.
The electronic / soul / jazz hybrid superhero left it so long because, in his own words, he’d been “obsessed with getting everything on my record absolutely perfect.”
But thanks to an illuminatingly informal stint with pianist Robert Glasper’s all-star jazz ensemble R+R=NOW (who recorded their whole album in five days) McFerrin has managed to get out of his funk; in the process finding his most funky grooves yet.
The super-chilled Now That You Need Me is the result and the first hint at what might be coming from forthcoming follow-up record Love’s Last Chance.
“Now That You Need Me is all about giving up on the dreams of the person you’re in a relationship with,” says McFerrin. “But I wrote it like it was a letter I came home to, with someone giving up on me.
“The instrumental part of the song is actually meant to sound like the soundtrack for someone who is on the other side of making that choice and feeling great about it, like they’re riding down the coast in a convertible feeling totally free.”
It’s an evocative image and one that is perfectly conveyed through the hazy synth chords, lo-fi drums and spacious bass part.
Even the echoey vocals – completely written and sung by McFerrin himself for the first time – have the aura of vanishing into the distance, leaving all your cares behind.
Love’s Last Chance will be released on 16 August via AWAL.
MORE FROM THIS WEEK’S MIX
YAZZ AHMED: SHOAL OF SOULS
LUCINDA CHUA: FEEL SOMETHING
NICK WALTERS & PARADOX ENSEMBLE: 34268
ELIANE ELIAS: BABY COME TO ME
P.S. You can find all of the tracks reviewed above in the 45 Revolutions per Minute playlist below or click to access the 45 RPM Playlist on Spotify itself.
If you like what you hear (or even if you don’t), please engage in dialogue with me @45rpm_Reviews on Twitter. And, if you’d like to receive updates weekly, please subscribe to the email list to get these recommendations sent to your inbox weekly.
– SV –