A smooth transition from old fashioned soul to modern R&B.
When Leon Bridges released his debut album Coming Home
three years ago, its nostalgic musicality and stylish production arguably defined Bridges
as Otis Redding or Sam Cooke reborn. The irony with evoking these fifties/sixties icons, of course, is that things can begin to feel dated. But with his follow-up album Good Thing
, Bridges has completely rebranded himself in a surprising yet relevant way.
Moving away from the likes of Redding and Cooke, Leon Bridges has instead embraced the vibes of the 70s. ‘Bad, Bad News’ begins with such swagger and confidence, that it is hard to believe this is the same man who brought us ‘Better Man’ three years earlier. It is a representation of the influences Bridges has clearly taken for his second album.
succeeds with its stripped back tracks that allow the soul singer to do what he does best...croon. And tracks like ‘Shy’ & ‘Beyond’ are classic examples of this.
The latter half of the album is where things begin to feel a little samey and mildly uninteresting. The continuous display of musical sophistication (for lack of a better phrase) is nothing new, therefore you’d be forgiven for thinking you are listening to Pharrell or even, at times, an early 2000’s Usher. But they do not hurt Good Thing’s overall sentiment.
As a lesson in reinvention, Good Thing is a master class. A complete redefinition of Bridges’ trademark image, his second album is a statement proving he is not only interested in producing throwback albums. In a decade that has shown us it’s hard to remain relevant, Leon Bridges makes it look effortless. Bravo.
Listen to Leon Bridges - Good Thing in full below