Aloe Blacc has been unfairly smeared as the indie R. Kelly, an onerous association that shortchanges Blacc's depth, versatility and amazing absorption of everything from A Tribe Called Quest and Isaac Hayes to slippery salsa and down-tempo electronica. Covering Sam Cooke's spare hymn "Long Time Coming," Blacc transforms the cut into a P-Funk torch song, circled in harp samples and deep drops of bass that fall like lead tears. Then, on a dime, he switches gears, strips away all the otherworldly beats and sings "Busking," an a cappella ode to waiting for the bus. Meanwhile, Latin-scorched tracks such as "Bailar - Scene 1" aren't mere border-city drive-bys: Blacc flows effortlessly in and out of Spanish, adds some Tito Puente-esque horns and creates a serious sensuous chemistry rather than just a hip-hop Shakira dry hump. This is the way a hip-licking groove should be laid out: Simultaneously cutting-edge and deeply entrenched in the classics, Shine Through is the soul record of the year.
Get the Music Newsletter
Keep your thumb on the local music scene with music features, additional online music listings and show picks. We'll also send special ticket offers and music promotions available only to our Music Newsletter subscribers.
More MUSIC News
- Shows, Shows, Shows: A Glimpse of Rhinoceropolis Through Flier Art
Thu., May 14, 8 p.m.
Sat., May 16, 8 p.m.
Fri., May 15, 8 p.m.
Fri., May 22, 8 p.m.
- Tom Hagerman Talks About the CSO's New Collaboration with Local Artists
- Every New Denver Concert Announcement