A masterpiece from Bilal – the record we knew he had in him all this time since 1st Born Second came out nearly a decade prior! Earlier in his career, Bilal was one of those distinct voices you'd hear assisting myriad singers and MCs on their singles, someone you knew should be a superstar in his own right. Whether or not he ever reaches that status in popularity or in financial rewards, here he's delivered what
might be the soul
R&B album of the year for 2010. We'd hasten to compare him to anyone else out there, but there's a boundless sense of creativity that begs comparison to Erykah Badu, in spirit if not in the sound. Much of the album is co-produced by Steve Mckie, with live instrumentation that gives it a funky psychedelic soul
feel: live drums, beats and effects, Moog, keys, synths, guitars and bass. The other collaborators in the production booth – Shafiq Husayn, Nottz, 88 Keys – all clearly share Bilal's vision, as we hear nothing that sounds like a concession to anything or anyone. Lyrically, Bilal deals with matters of grave importance and more intimate personal truths, but the adventurousness and soul
fulness of the music give it all a unified feel. We could go on and on about this one, kids. Don't pass it up! Includes "Cake & Eat It Too", "Restart", "All Matter", "Flying", "Levels", "Little One", "Move On", "Robots", "The Dollar", "Who Are You" and "Think Over".
(Out of print.)