Boomkat Product Review:
Hotly tipped indie shapeshifter Bartees Strange breathes new life into jangly indie on his sophomore album, drizzling D'Angelo-like R&B into Bon Iver's slick outsider pop and capturing the flickering, twisted energy of early TV on the Radio in the process.
Strange's debut album "Live Forever" introduced the DC musician to an indie landscape that was gasping for new energy. With just a handful of tracks he proved he was up to the task, blending smart wordplay and smart hybridized rap formula with supple songwriting, memorable riffs and innovative production. He continues the journey on his 4AD debut, seemingly expressing a desire to absorb an entire record collection of ideas, jumping from memorable radio pop ('Mulholland Dr.') to summery dancefloor anthems ('Wretched'), dissonant alt-rap ('Cosigns') and tangled folk ('Tours').
And while it's hard to pin Strange down to one sound or another, his voice - and more importantly his content - ties everything to the present, giving us a uniquely poetic vision of Black America in the 2020s that's unflinchingly real and unashamedly honest. Hold out until the end and we're even treated to a ferric D'Angelo tribute with 'Hennessy'.