Maxwell's Urban Hang Suite is the debut album by American R&B singer-songwriter Maxwell. It was recorded in 1994 and 1995, then released on April 2, 1996, by Columbia Records. Maxwell largely wrote and produced the album himself, recording in sessions at Electric Lady Studios, RPM, Sorcerer, and Chung King Studios in New York City, and CRC Studios in Chicago. The resulting music features a mellow, groove-based sound with elements of funk, jazz, smooth soul, and quiet storm. A concept album, Maxwell's Urban Hang Suite was composed as a song cycle that focuses on an adult romance, based in part on Maxwell's personal experiences. Maxwell's Urban Hang Suite was not an immediate commercial success, but it was helped by the release of its second single "Ascension (Don't Ever Wonder)" in July 1996, and the album eventually became a million-seller. It was also a success with critics, who praised it as a departure from the mainstream, hip hop-oriented R&B of the time, while earning Maxwell several accolades and comparisons to soul singers of the past, particularly Marvin Gaye and Prince. The success of Maxwell's Urban Hang Suite elevated Maxwell's reputation to that of a sex symbol and a notable performer in the music industry. He was credited with shaping the "neo soul" movement of musicians that rose to prominence during the late 1990s. Along with D'Angelo's Brown Sugar (1995) and Erykah Badu's Baduizm (1997), the album provided commercial exposure to neo soul and has since been cited by several critics as Maxwell's greatest work.Wikipedia
can someone please help me. i accidentally put this album on through the speakers in my room and the all encompassing smoothness has removed all friction from every object in the room. I can't open the door as i no longer have fingerprints and the door handle is slipperier than the soap in the prison showers. once i finally get out of this room the question remains will my new orb shape be the new fashion and shoot me to international fame or will i be shunned as the weird ball boy who looks like Duncan Goodhews head rolling around.
This album is so "smooth" it slid in one ear and back out the other, leaving no impression behind other than a slightly slimy film to mark its passage.
An entire album of songs that all managed to sound the exact same. And they sucked.
This is a desert island album for me. Not because I'd want to listen to it for the rest of my life, but because you could fuck a coconut to this, and it would be consensual and probably the best sex you ever had. I'm only like 3.5% gay, and I'd fuck Maxwell to this. Christ, at 3:06 of "The Suite Theme" he just exhales forcefully into the mic. This dude must be paying child support around the world. I heard that at the end of his shows they release 50k Plan B pills from the ceiling like balloons. Stuart Matthewman (of Sade) is all over this, and it shows. If you want similar (but also more interesting and varied) music that replaces sex themes with love themes, and replaces a sexy male with a sexy female, then reach for Sade. If you want to fuck something, reach for Maxwell (although, Sade works for that too). I much prefer Sade over this in casual listening (Sade is awesome), but this accomplishes what it set out to do perfectly. It just gets stale by the end. 7.5/10
A very 3 album for me. I kept waiting for some unexpected element to surprise me and draw me in but it never really came. I like most of the arrangements/atmosphere (808s!) but nothing I can really sink my teeth into. Just makes me want to listen to Marvin Gaye.
Hey, what's up Cum Knuckles? Fancy joining me for a burger and fries this coming Tuesday? We can put on some Maxwell, talk about our feelings and re-create the Hindenburg disaster.
When the first track kicked in and was pretty smooth, I was wondering what the hell Robert Christgau was smoking—or perhaps more appropriately, what he wasn't—that made him give this one of his "dud" grades, and then the first vocal track started. Maxwell has a fine voice, but not a *fine* voice; I thought Sade's Diamond Life was sexier than this, and certainly better paced. This would make for a pretty good instrumental album to vibe and/or bang to, but almost every track has about 3 minutes of material for its 5 or 6-minute runtime, to the point that there are multiple tracks that sound like they're ending, only to ramp back up for another fruitless minute. I mean, seven whole minutes of Til the Cops Come Knockin', plus a 90-second reprisal at the end of the record? No wonder Public Enemy said 911 was a joke. Key Tracks: The Urban Theme, Suitelady (The Proposal Jam), The Suite Theme
Sounds like George Michael having a stroke
I did not need to hear this album before I died.
This sounds like joke music
A few nice funky parts but overall very boring r&b/soul. And a terrible album cover.
This... just might be my gateway drug to full-on R&B.
Just what I needed to listen to today!
Never heard of Maxwell but really enjoyed this. Very mellow.
Very very good
Very cool album, nice change in pace
fantastically smooth and sensual. impossible not to get into the mood while giving this a listen
Kenny G meets '70s elevator music. This is something they should add to the torture arsenal at Guantanamo. 10 minutes of this and I was admitting to everything from being Jack the Ripper to actually being Q.
Punk smooth r&b
As smooth as diarrhea and about as welcome. What the fuck is it doing on this list? Best Tracks: The Urban Theme; Welcome; Sumthin' Sumthin'
Wow, it's like someone made a big batch of "every-R&B-trope-I-hate" juice and forced me to chug.
this is now on regular, workday rotation. great background for cleaning out Outlook...
This is straight-up bang-time music. Red curtains, candles, glasses of wine...yeah, this is great.
What a great piece of work. I wonder how I never hear of him before.
Why I have never heard this before? I don't know if it just didn't get any airplay or land in the UK, but this ought to have been massive. By turns funky and mellow, and the warmness of the production just draws you in. An album you need to listen to in one go.
Smooth and funky
If Mamas Gun was the companion to Voodoo this is the precursor. Jazz influenced R&B which feels both classic and modern at the same time. The title perfectly describes what we hear, as the songs flow seamlessly into each other. My only criticism is that some of the songs are a little too similar to each other but overall this is a great album.
A debut from a twentysomething that is a concept album about a relationship. Sounds like a train wreck waiting to happen. I bought this when it was first released, and it blew me away. It still does. While there are refences to Sam Cooke, Marvin Gaye and Al Green, Maxwell's view is his own. A great listen from start to finish.
I hear a lot of childish gambino in this project. It was a very smooth album. My Favorite was the saxophone in loves the only company
super fun - 9/10 maybe this should’ve come out 20 years earlier but I’m not complaining good vibes
Йоу, добро пожаловать на Late Night Show Очень стильное классическое R&B, звуки которого я уверен засемпловали с удовольствием. Скачал на плеер, запустил на колоночках и кайфанул
Loved this super slick and super chill
a r&b hang out record. Acension is still one of the best songs of the past 30 years. His voice is silky smooth. The height of neo-soul.
favs: "Dancewitme", "Sumthin' Sumthin'", "Whenever Wherever Whatever" least fav: "Reunion"
Fuck amazing. Smooth when it needs to be smooth, grooves when it needs to groove, and a couple bangers along the way. And it only gets better the longer you listen. “Urban Theme,” “Dancewitme,” “Whenever Wherever Whatever,” “Suitelady,” and “The Suite Theme” are gems.
Lounge at its peak. Whole thing drips with sex and innuendo in a hilarious way. Would never get away with this on a first date.
Very smooth. I've heard Maxwell before, but never listened to this album.
Pretty cool and sexy, Maxwell is just a classic classy guy with a solid voice. Hard to be mad at him
quite calming :))
Immediately feelin this, neo soul, bit like D'Angelo, but Stevie Wonder-ish but more smooth. Feels classy, decent chill tunes. Tailed off a bit in the middle and at the end, went a bit wet. Start was still real decent tho. 4/5.
No idea how to describe, but I thought that this is a great album full of underwhelming individual songs. I overuse "vibe" but that's what it is, it's a overwhelming feeling of goodness permeating my daily life. Very pleasant
Perfect album as the weather is heating up, lol. For some reason I feel like driving through a busy city on a Saturday night with my windows down.
I remember this being released and a huge buzz around it but not much else - it just wasn't the right time for me to appreciate it... ...as opposed to now: wow - this just hits all the right notes (sure, pun intended). Smooth in the best ways but for me it is rarely boring - tremendous production and musicianship. It took everything I liked about the best Marvin Gaye but this is better - just the right doses of edge that Marvin rarely ever had (e.g. angular guitar lines on "Dancewitme"). Also point of note: while Maxwell the "singer" is clearly the feature here, the music is the big standout for me - the album starts with a great instrumental which sets the tone that this will be not just a vocal album. A great album for its genre, which while not ever going to be my favourite/daily listen it is so well-crafted that it's a keeper. 8/10 4 stars
Apparently Maxwell is credited with establishing the neo-soul genre, and I always think that's so cool when an artist starts a musical trend. I really enjoyed this album...it got a little repetitive to my ears after a while, but his voice is heavenly, and the songs were cool.
Wel dit was aangenaam! In het begin zeker 5 waardig maar daarvoor is het net iets te lang en viel het wat plat naar het einde toe
This music is downright erotic
I have no idea how this dude managed to produce two #1 hits in my lifetime and not ring a bell for me at all, but I enjoyed listening to this album. After a catchy opening it felt a bit slow for a while, but the album definitely grew on me once I hit "Whenever Wherever Whatever" and "Lonely's The Only Company".
Ahhh que chabochito .
A pretty smooth album, for sure, 90's neo-soul at its best. Will get back to it.
Jazzy and smooth
Better than I expected - really pretty groovy
Du bon R'n'B/soul qui se laisse écouter tout seul. Crée une bonne ambiance détente ou pour créer un mood avec un.e partenaire.
An undeniably smooth album that is very easy on the ears. I liked this one quite a bit.
A super-smooth soul album. Incredible production and I could see myself putting it on when I'm in the mood, though it does wash over me a bit without any memorable or stand out moments.
This was a remarkably smooth album. This neo-soul record had tinges of contemporary R&B, funk, and a lot of jazz. The influence of Marvin Gaye especially could be felt. I also heard some Michael Jackson-esque vocal delivery patterns. Overall Maxwell very successfully brought these elements together in a sharp departure from the hip hop centric R&B of the mid 90s.
I am so down with music that makes you sexier – not just feel sexier, but actually be sexier and enhance your performance, too. Just buttery smooth and awesome. Neo-soul forever.
Feels wacky having this be the second album after Herbie Hancock's Headhunters today. This guy is smooth and with a silky upper register. Til The Cops Come Knockin' is a song that drips.
Rating: 7/10 Best songs: Ascension, Dancewithme, Til the cops come knockin, Reunion
90’s cheese aside it was a surprisingly smooth and good album
Very fun album. I jammed to this all morning. Very smooth and felt a little ahead of its time in some ways. I feel like I've heard some of these beats in current songs. I'll be down to hang with this album!
Bit like a long bubble bath. Relaxing and smooth has hell, but after a while you get a bit bored.
Taki Stevie Wonder
Old school funk and soul. Nice.
4.2 - Sexy mood music that draws heavily from the best R&B of the 1970s (Barry White, Marvin Gaye, Shuggie Otis...), performed exceptionally well so it sounds sophisticated and not kitschy or derivative. I especially love the synths on "Urban Theme", the slap bass on "Sumthin' Sumthin'" and the lush orchestration on "Lonely's the Only Company." A gentle and romantic journey from start to finish.
Smooth and soulful with really good musicianship. I especially like the bass lines throughout the album. I could see this as an album Marvin Gaye might have made.
Smooth and Funky
So extremely awesome. A bit too long but man. Smooth.
very smooth. easy to listen to, mellow aber nicht boring
Chill easy listen, liked it a lot
The songwriting is a little bland, but this album grew on me. The production here is superb; one of those albums that you'd use to demonstrate your expensive CD hi-fi in the 90s. It also sounds like this is where Justin Timberlake got a lot of his ideas.
This is a very sexy album. 90s R&B bit with that 70s house band tightness. It drops towards the end, but I was very happily surprised that this was as good as it was!
mood sexy grand mere (maxwell + tricot)
Súper smúþ R&B. Mjög næs. Algjört Maxwell'n'chill!
Uuh niin kotoisaa kuin voi vaan musiikki olla. Lämmintä ja rentouttavaa. Ja kovin tanssittavaa myös! Tämä on tietty turvallisempaa ja yksipuolisempaa kuin vaikka D'Angelon musiikki ja levyn jälkipuolisko jää siksi vähän piippuun. Sanotaan kuitenkin varma 4/5.
This was actually really nice, very groovy and chill
Pretty soulful early rnb well made, some of the lyrics felt generic and sappy but overall it's really well produced and performed
An album that's made to have on in the background while hanging out in an urban suite, made by Maxwell... I can't complain, it's exactly what it says in the tin.
Enjoyable. Don't see myself going back to this one though.
Good sex music, nice bass.
Chill af, still good
Spotify. Fave song Ascension. Ok listen
Decent R&B but too long and fails to be more than background music
Wel door maar net iets te soft na meerdere nummers
Jizz jazzity goodness
This funky jazz just doesn't really do it for me. Definitely better than Jamiroquai or whatever the hell that was, though.
First impressions, oooh this is nice. Funky grooves. I do not know much of the genre "neo-soul". This does not sound like 1996 at all. Very modern sounding, if this is the original they did an amazing job in the production, sounds like a modern remaster. Love the bass on this, the piano, the synths, the sax. All the instrumentation is superb. Vocals are good, if not straightforward, but I would almost prefer it without. I like the falsetto parts, if it were more of that I'd be down. As the album went on I started to get kind of bored though.
Very very smooth. I liked it.
It starts so strong, and then drags and gets too midnight stormy.
Quite a vibe. Definitely something I would put on again