Maxwell - black SUMMERS’ night album review: the old-fashioned soul man lays it on thick

Thu, Jul 28, 2016, 22:00





R&B / Soul

Maxwell has always been the coolest loverman in the business. While peers such as D’Angelo have had careers full of ups and downs, he has stayed true to his slo-mo, neo-soul calling since Maxwell’s Urban Hang Suite first introduced us to his skyscraping falsetto.

Two decades on, Maxwell’s voice is still in fine fettle and lighting up beautiful, stripped-back songs about spirituality, sensuality and especially sexuality. Maxwell has stuck to the basics over the years, so black SUMMERS’ night is rather old-fashioned. Tracks such as the inventive Lake By the Ocean and the eerie Lost show Maxwell knows all about the power of the space between the notes.

However, there are far too many moments here when he appears to be relying on that rich, chocolate voice to woo you rather than try something different or risky.