Leon Bridges – Coming Home (2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96kHz | Time – 34:13 minutes | 723 MB | Genre: R&B, Gospel
Official Digital Download – Source: HDTracks | @ Columbia Records
Recorded: 2015, Niles City Sound
Leon Bridges’ debut studio album.
There’s a certain power in classic soul music–a blend of gospel, blues and folk that can heal the soul in a very real way. That’s exactly what’s at work in “River,” the spacious love song from Texas songwriter Leon Bridges. Built of acoustic guitar, tambourine and (most importantly) Bridges incredible vocals, “River” sings of redemption in the waters of love. It might be a baptism, it might be a first kiss, or it might be the moment when the world heals its wounds–whatever Bridges might be seeking on “River,” it’s a heaven that all of us hope for.
Bridges has been rising in stature for some time now, thanks in no small part to his incredible voice and knack for arrangements that transport us to a bygone era. The 25 year-old singer is often compared to Sam Cooke–and it’s a fair point: his work holds that same soothing quality that’s kept “A Change is Gonna Come” playing strong after all this time. “River” will appear on Bridges’s upcoming debut album, „Coming Home“.
At a time when music’s healing qualities feel more necessary than ever, “River” is a piece of perfect timing from an artist who seems destined for greatness. Listen to it below and give yourself up to sound.
It’s difficult to imagine a 1963 Columbia release from an artist whose look and sound echo 1911. In 2015, however, the thought of a young artist seemingly transported from a bygone era — 52 years prior, to be exact — requires no imagination whatsoever. Here’s Leon Bridges. He was born in 1989. The singer, songwriter, and guitarist takes it back to the early ’60s, slightly earlier than the majority of soul-rooted artists, including labelmates Raphael Saadiq, who have favored a vintage approach over a contemporary one. For those who hold younger artists to an impossible standard of authenticity, Bridges is unlikely to receive a passing grade. As a youngster, he was naturally drawn to libidinous, then-current pop-R&B acts like Usher and Ginuwine, and he didn’t even have to get his hands dirty to absorb later inspiration from the likes of Sam Cooke and pre-“Grapevine” Marvin Gaye, not when all he needed was an Internet connection. Helped by White Denim’s Josh Block and Austin Jenkins, Bridges touches all the retro-soul bases. Each element of his ten-song, half-hour debut evokes early- to mid-’60s R&B: the song structures, the application of reverb, the dust-coated church organ, the doo wop background vocals, the horn charts that accent rather than dominate. Bridges sings of seeking salvation and taking trains, and he offers proposals as modest as “I won’t weigh you down.” If he were a shouter, Bridges would likely come across as a caricature, but he works the deeply heartfelt but understated angle — most of the songs are ballads, and only a couple work up a sweat — without any sense of affectation. While each line is believable, “Lisa Sawyer” is all the way real, a sweet and languid biographical sketch of Bridges’ mother. It’s all a pleasing time warp without turbulence, one with songs built more to evoke the past than to last in one’s memory. –AllMusic Review by Andy Kellman
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