James Blake often navigates the boundaries between kitsch and honesty. Briton Blake (33) who will appear on his new album Friends who break your heart It reflects on a lost friendship, usually looking serious. The sound of a baritone lavishly swings, or wraps around musical instruments warmly.
The closing stanza “If I’m Insecure” sounds like a statement, but Blake gets lost in his electronic horizons. This happens more often on this new fifth album. It’s a quiet album, where Blake complements the electronic parts with soft strumming and chords. There are hit songs like “Show Me” and “Say What You Will”. Unfortunately, the impressive “Show Me” got an emotional break, with downright dramatic turns, just like the opening track “Famous Last Words.” It’s an advantage that the Blake electric piano is less prominent here. And that Blake’s potion is also shown by the wonderfully hypnotic “Foot Forward”.
A version of this article also appeared on NRC on the morning of October 14, 2021