Bigger Love: an album for making corona babies
Bigger Love is John Legend's latest album, where he returns to all musical resources from his past albums.
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After four years of Darkness And Light and having been part of La la land, John Legend has released a new album with sixteen songs.
Legend is a great singer, composer and pianist: a musician with an enviable arsenal of tools at his disposal.
In spite of all the compositional and instrumental resources that Legend could use, Bigger Love is an album that is musically repetitive, the reiteration of a style that Legend found in past releases and that he developed with great skill at that time.
In fact, many of Bigger Love's songs can be heard alongside past works without the passage of time being felt.
As for the lyrics, Bigger Love falls into the category of baby-making music, which works in certain contexts - and, let's face it, the world needs a little candor right now - but it gets cloying when you listen to the album as a whole.
Still, a few songs stand out.
"Don't Walk Away," featuring Jamaican singer Koffee, makes a refreshing contrast from the moment her voice is heard. The beat that is in the song to match her rap, despite how simple it is, makes it stand out from the other songs.
"I Do" has a subtle mix of soul and funk with a chorus that couldn't be simpler ("I do"), but that helps the rhythm of the song to have more drive, to push to dance and sing at the same time.
"Actions" is the great highlight of the album, the one that has the best mix between a slow but catchy rhythm that goes well with the chorus: "Actions speak louder than, speak louder than, speak louder than love songs", and the use of choruses and synthesizers to give it a tension that the other tracks don't have.
"Actions" has a lyric that recognizes the failures of relationships, the difficulty of going from repeating the same ideas in discussions to actually changing the dynamics of a life together.
The other songs abound in sugar, in descriptions of how someone's favorite space is his wife's mouth or his sexual fantasies in the convertible car he just bought.
As noted above, as music for "making coronialls," it is a coherent record, but to hear it all requires a very particular disposition, or no concern to listen carefully to the songs, in which case it might be worth visiting some of his previous works and enjoying his music with the attention it deserves.