I give just about everything in R&B at least a listen. Rihanna, Keyshia Cole, Chris Brown, Usher, whatever; most of it lately has been varying degrees of crud. It’s been hard to really nail down what modern R&B should sound like because so much of it is basically watered down house or rap beats and an excuse to invite a hot rapper to feature on a given track.
I’m happy to say that Miguel’s new album, “Kaleidoscope Dream,” may have it just about down. It’s funky, it’s got shimmers of hip hop basslines (including the title track, which I’m fairly certain uses the same drum sample that Dr. Dre used for Eminem’s smash hit “My Name Is (Slim Shady)”), it’s got some futuristic Frank Ocean-style flourishes, and it’s all anchored by Miguel’s solid, unpretentious, range-y singing and songwriting.
I’m also happy to say that apparently the streets is listening. His first single, “Adorn,” sits atop the Billboard hip-hop and R&B charts as of this writing. Watch the video below and go buy the album anywhere you see fit.