John Legend: Love in the Future – review


John Legend's fifth studio album is a far cry from his last, 2010's consciousness-raising, full-tilt collaboration with the Roots, Wake Up! The sound is positively pared in comparison, produced and programmed by the likes of Kanye West and Dave Tozer. Legend's voice is excellent throughout and comes to the fore on ballads such as All of Me. If ever the record's appeal wanes due to the generic feel of the backings and melodies, it is given a lift by Legend's fine piano playing or little production tweaks – the lo-fi crunch of the backing on The Beginning; the short trumpet solo on You and I; the moment at the close of Dreams where the vocal turns into a vocoder line and you wonder who let Daft Punk into the control room. The hook-laden single Made to Love, with its handclaps, djembe drumming and Beatlesque, John Barry close, has max appeal.

Molloy Woodcraft

The GuardianTramp

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