2013’s Overgrown was accolades galore, with fans, fellow artists, and critics continuing to show love. James Blake began working on this follow-up around the same year, and in-between collecting credits on Beyonce and Frank Ocean’s albums, the English purveyor of forward, spacious, and melancholy-soaked pop finished The Colour In Anything. At 17 tracks long, the singer-songwriter/producer diverts slightly from his signature minimalism, but it is still Blake’s vocals (pitched and processed, of course) and solemn piano/keys over skeletal, sparse percussive elements that define the LP; there are just more textures and layers than we’re used to. Perhaps it’s Blake’s decision to collaborate — Frank Ocean and Rick Rubin worked on The Colour In Anything— that lead to such progression in style, but the extra flesh does not detract from the listening experience, and the full-length is stunning from beginning to end. Highlights include: “Radio Silence,” “Timeless,”, “My Willing Heart,” “I Need a Forest Fire,” “f.o.r.e.v.e.r,” “Modern Soul,” and “Love Me In Whatever Way.”
- 180 gram pressing
- gatefold sleeve
- music label: Polydor 2016
reviewed by donut savage 10/2016
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