CD of the Week
Album: Michael Kiwanuka, Home Again (Polydor)
Sunday 11 March 2012
The words "mellow" and "soul" should never be written in conjunction with each other. So let's not.
Instead let us consider Kiwanuka not as a generic descendant of Bill Withers, whom he resembles faintly in some respects, but as a pretty voice in a cultivated frame; as a sort of jazzy, kind-of-soulful, wholesome pop-folk singer of simple, non-swinging but beautifully arranged songs about uncomplicated emotions.
Home Again is sweet, inoffensive, well intentioned and gently, grainily melancholic, and it operates most fluently at that low temperature which offends some while delighting others. But consider this: MK's sweetness feels instinctual, his gentleness a function of his musical nature rather than some marketing department's idea of what might be seductive. Only in the Terry Callier-esque "Tell Me a Tale" does he sound like a mellow soul-jazz doll in a presentation box. That'll be the jazz flute.
To mark Tolstoy's 186th birthdaybooks
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 British tourists 'murdered' in Thailand: Pair's bloodied bodies found naked on Koh Tao beach
- 2 Vivienne Westwood says 'Yes' to Scottish Independence by declaring: 'I hate England'
- 3 Welcome to Cameroon, where drinking Baileys can lead to imprisonment
- 4 Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
- 5 Vogue under fire for 'Big Booty' article
Fifty Shades of Grey movie: New picture of Anastasia Steele unveiled
X Factor 2014 review: Simon Cowell and Cheryl Cole clash over Rouge Kiss
Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
Exhibit B: 'Racist' human zoo installation criticised by protesters outside the Barbican
Doctor Who, Listen, review: Possibly Steven Moffat's most terrifying episode
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
£23m Birmingham cycle scheme is attacked by Tory councillor for not catering to the elderly
Salmond accused of laughing off national debt with ‘what are they going to do: invade?’ joke