Courtesy of Mark H., we welcome our first fan-pick of the year by taking a trip through the long-awaited Black Messiah by D’Angelo and the Vanguard. Breathing new life into R&B and blending it with modern themes, D’Angelo’s re-emergence after a 14-year hiatus has appeared to pique critics’ interest in just about every corner of the field. Following the album, we then say a few words on the oldest theme in the book: LOVE. In any form, the ‘L’-word’s thematic presence in music is so ubiquitous as to almost be shrugged off. What keeps “love” fresh, and why the compulsion to wear one’s heart on their CD-sleeve?
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