x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

John Legend: Love in the Future

Legend's old school romancing works a treat here, the songwriting of topnotch quality.

John Legend
Love in the Future
Columbia
****

The album cover’s spare depiction of three red roses says it all: Love in the Future is an unabashed show of ardour for Legend’s fiancée, the model Chrissy Teigen. On the fervent epic Made to Love, Teigen is portrayed as “the perfect work of art”, while elsewhere, Legend opines that none of the stars in the firmament shine brighter than she.

Though that might sound overly saccharine on paper, Legend’s romancing works a treat here. This is partly because it’s perfectly in keeping with his old-school influences – Open Your Eyes nods to Stevie Wonder and Who Do We Think We Are samples Marvin Gaye – but mostly it’s because Legend’s handsome, seductive voice seems the ideal foil for Cupid’s arrow.

The songwriting is quality controlled. Guests, including Rick Ross and Dr John, bring plenty to the table and Legend’s long-term co-producers Kanye West and Dave Tozer ensure that nobody gets stuck in a time warp. One small gripe: even though two of its 16 tracks are little segues, Love in the Future seems a tad long-winded.

 

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