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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

A Seat at the Table

Solange

2016

Buy At Rough Trade
A Seat at the Table
Album Summary

A Seat at the Table is the third studio album by American singer-songwriter Solange. It was released on September 30, 2016, by Saint Records and Columbia Records. While recording the album, Solange released an EP, titled True (2012) and launched her own record label named Saint Records. Writing for the album began as early as 2008, while the recording sessions took place from 2013 to June 2016. Solange enlisted a variety of collaborators including rappers Lil Wayne and Q-Tip; singer-songwriters The-Dream, BJ the Chicago Kid, Kelly Rowland and Tweet; and musicians Sampha, Kelela and David Longstreth.A Seat at the Table was widely acclaimed by music critics and became Solange's first number-one album on the Billboard 200 in the United States, debuting with 46,000 copies sold (72,000 with additional album-equivalent units). The album's lead single, "Cranes in the Sky", won the Grammy for Best R&B Performance, becoming Solange's first Grammy nomination and win. In 2020, the album was ranked at 312 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.03

Votes

10545
Genres
Pop
Soul

Reviews

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Sat Apr 24 2021
1

How did she get a record deal, does she have a famous sister or something? I joke, but I don't find this good or memorable. Solange has a nice voice and the production is decent, but it's so one-note and no songs jump out. I get that the album is offering important social critcritique but because the music is so uninspiring the message doesn't hit home for me.

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Tue Apr 13 2021
5

Okay, I really love this. I love the stories interspersed throughout. I love the musical style. I love the message. It’s just good all around.

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Tue Nov 02 2021
1

Really gave this a try as had an opinion of her as just a pop stars sister, wish I hadn't as this is arty music for 12 year olds, no introspection or even a decent beat in the entire album.

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Mon Jan 10 2022
5

I still remember when this one dropped like it was yesterday. The audacity of Solange--I hadn't really heard from her since the banger that is "Losing You", and then suddenly she drops an album right up there with, if not beyond, the best work of her sister. What's her name again? Oh yeah, Beyonce. Of course, they aren't competition but I was so impressed with Solange's style displayed on here, it's got a delicate touch that reminds me of like D'Angelo or Erykah Badu, just a refreshing neo-soul cleanser to R&B that I think is always welcome. Her voice is subdued but has its own power, and the grooves throughout are so comforting. Not to mention the unwavering messages of Black empowerment that carry throughout. In a year stacked with so, so many incredible albums (2016 has yet to be matched in my opinion), she managed to get the top spot for a lot of people. Not me, but she made my list for sure. Hearing it again today, I wish I had a time machine to beat my own ass for not holding it in higher regard. This album is perfect, deal with it. Back to back 5's again, I don't mind. Favorite tracks: Junie, Don't Touch My Hair, Cranes in the Sky, Mad, Weary, FUBU. Album art: Absolutely love this picture. Hairclips looking like butterflies. She's got the thousand yard stare, the sort of jaded glare that says, without words, "don't touch my hair." 5/5

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Sat Apr 24 2021
1

Legit the most boring album I think I've heard on this list so far. Which is a shame, because the themes Solange sings about are so powerful, but bar Cranes in the Sky, I didn't like the album: there was so much disconnect between words of anger and despair and the slow tempo and repetitiveness of the music.

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Wed Jun 30 2021
5

Wow, what a cohesive, beautiful album. I had heard a couple of songs from this before, but listening to the whole thing through was such a treat. Powerful lyrics, beautiful atmospheric instrumentation, and great, smooth vocals.

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Thu Dec 02 2021
3

I think the cover of this album is just about the most perfect depiction of what I felt listening to this album. The vibe of the album is intentional, pure, sparsely adorned, and holds your attention. The beats and arrangements are generally mellow and ride somewhere between jazz, hip-hop, funk and R+B. The instrumentals themselves are subtle and provide the solid foundation for the vocals, which always take center stage. Stand out tracks for me include \"Weary\", \"Mad\" (where Lil Wayne contributed some genuinely heartfelt lines) and \"F.U.B.U\". My sense of engagement with the album was disrupted by the occasional track where Solange's vocals sounded thin or strained. \"Where Do We Go\" is one such example, where I almost felt myself needing a warm cup of water and to take some extra breaths. Not sure what that was about, because it seemed really uncharacteristic when considered against the rest of the album. That aside, I found the whole album to be really engaging and a welcomed introduction to an artist I'd never heard of before.

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Mon Apr 19 2021
4

R&B, but sort of transcends genre convention. Inventive arrangements and feels very personal. Profound and groovy, which is a hard balance to strike!

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Fri Aug 13 2021
5

Every once in a while an album comes along that challenges and expands the notion of what an album can be. This is one of those albums. It's political, soothing, and is just so expansive that it's beyond classification. I didn't listen to this album when it was topping the end of the year lists in 2016 and I really should have been. It deserved its place at the top.

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Sat Oct 02 2021
5

Laid back and confident soul album that plays around with hip-hop, funk and world-music without feeling like it's trying to hard. Really good stuff.

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Thu Nov 18 2021
5

Rather enjoyed this one. Really like the atmosphere she builds, especially with layers of vocals. For the most part fairly spare in terms of arrangements with plenty of breathing room to hear everything distinctly in the mix. Has a pristine sort of sound but the basslines and drumbeats keep it from being too delicate. Love the mixture of aesthetics from different eras blended together. Sounds great on headphones. Appreciated the clips of speech used as interludes - really adds to the atmosphere and grounds it in reality with a dramatic power. Ignorantly, I had no idea she was Beyonce's sister! This is a 4.5 for me but man I think I'm going to round it up to 5 because I can't believe this one slipped past me! Super impressed. Thanks 1001!

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Thu Nov 18 2021
5

Incredible production and songwriting throughout the entire album. Not every song catches my attention but it’s a very unique album that blends so many different influences that it completely becomes it’s own sound. 5/5

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Tue Nov 23 2021
5

11/19/2021 Today's Album: "A Seat at the Table" by Solange - I did a little bit of research on this album when I was unable to actually listen to it and found out that Solange is Beyonce's younger sister and after listening to this album, it is obvious that the talent in the family doesn't stop at her big sister. This album was enjoyable from start to finish. Her subtle vocals, but harsh criticisms on race are complimented by simple, but effective lo-fi instrumentals that are some of the best produced ones that I have heard. The album almost flew by despite it's more than 50 minute runtime and I attribute that to the way this album kept my interest throughout the entire project. I was either appreciating her vocals, a lyric, an interesting addition to the instrumentals, or one of the biting racially charged interludes that split up the main tracklist. These interludes give the audience a clear message for the whole album, which is one of Solange choosing to not accept or take the time to learn of what America is because of how broken, unfair, and disrespectful America has been to her race. Songs like Mad, Don't you Wait, Don't Touch my Hair, and a many others all point to this idea of black culture being stepped on and abused by American systems and Solange's refusal to be okay with any of it or accept any of it. She pretty much talks to the entire white US population during the album as if she was talking about her relationship with a single person, which allows for a lot of interesting comments and critique. Overall, this album floored me. It was so subtle, but packed such a punch and every few seconds I was being surprised by a new sound, with everything sounding so organic and natural within the mix. Great vocals, great music, great message, and great vibes. This is a killer record for sure. Score: 9.5/10 A masterpiece Highlights: Essentially every non-interlude track

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Tue Jul 20 2021
4

Thoughtful and thought provoking - a tour of ideas as well as musical styles and sounds.

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Tue Jun 29 2021
4

This is a strong album from Solange, who emerged as her own force receiving critical praise and attention with this outing. Her voice soars and eases the listener into a smooth experience.

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Sat Jun 26 2021
4

Honestly hesitant to listen this album. Figured it wasn't my thing because I am in the minority with thinking this family is overrated. I was pleasantly surprised to learn how wrong I was. This was a great album with amazing rhythm and beats.

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Thu Jul 01 2021
4

Beautiful and powerful! Love how the interludes are worked in and add to the emotion of the music.

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Thu May 27 2021
4

I never would have heard this albumnif not for this project. I really enjoyed it. Great, jazzy, expressive singing, heartfelt lyrics and interesting arrangements 4 stars

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Sun Nov 07 2021
4

I didn’t realize how good of a voice solange had until I listened to this. This was mostly better than the Beyoncé album I got a while back just based off the voice and production. Every song was enjoyable but there were a few too many interludes. Fav songs: weary, don’t touch my hair

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Mon Dec 20 2021
4

So is this Beyonce's sister? I am unclear who this is. On one hand, that's got to be tough. On another, what an opportunity to apparently discover her talent as well. This album has a smooth vibe. Solange's vocals are sweet and commanding. Cranes in the Sky and Mad are standout great tracks. Don't You Wait feels like it belongs in an awesome 80s action movie. Where Do We Go channels the Elton John - Bennie and the Jets punctuated piano. This album is a surprising delight!

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Wed May 03 2023
4

Very quality. One of the best R&B albums I’ve heard Although I don’t care for all the “ayo being black is sooo beautiful and amazing” shit

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Mon May 24 2021
3

Her voice is stunning. Moments on this album are great, lovely harmonies, funky beats, sunny vibes, provocative lyrics, and I get that it speaks loudly politically. But generally theres not a lot of catchy melodies, and I think this flavour of funk/soul/rnb is not really my cup of tea. I want to like it more than I do, cos Solange is an icon.

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Tue Nov 16 2021
3

This is pretty great. Elegant arrangements, lovely vocals, with a strong message. It has a bit of a throwback quality. The flow of the album feels a little Janet or Lauryn Hill-ish, particularly with all the interludes. She actually overdid it with the interludes, but the album was enjoyable overall. Fave Songs: Junie, Weary, Don't Touch My Hair, Don't Wish Me Well

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Tue Oct 31 2023
3

Minimal, jazz inflected soul and R&B. Mellowed my mind after a rough day at work.

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Thu Jul 01 2021
2

This album is not a style I would normally listen to. And I found the album to be more interesting thematically than musically. The spoken tracks mixed in talking about the Black American experience was cool and was interesting to listen to. Honestly, if I was going to re-listen to this I'd consider just listening to the spoken sections. There were a few instrumental parts that made me perk up, generally when they pulled in some blues or funk elements. But it was never enough to keep me really interested through an entire song. I do like how the album flows in and out of the spoken bits into from one song to another. Overall, not much really stood out for me. I can't say that any song is bad, just that I found it musically uninteresting. Favorite Songs: Cranes in the sky

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Mon Nov 22 2021
2

Acoustic r'n'b with below average melodies, a welcome first appearance from Lil Wayne on any album on this list, some sporadically fabulous drums and bass, and interludes that don't just add gestalt but also the best arrangements on the album--which is a bit weird.

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Tue Feb 22 2022
2

Barb couldn’t think of anything she liked about it, when I asked her. I think it’s interesting in the beats and grooves.

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Wed Jan 24 2024
2

Some of the arrangement was really nice but overall it was repetitive

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Mon Mar 22 2021
1

Something reminds me Beyoncé, look of vocalist, some of the songs. But this probably not my type of music. Slowly and quietly. And I haven't liked that short interludes between songs in the album. Cranes in the Sky music video, 10/10.

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Fri Oct 08 2021
1

Not my cup of tea. Appreciate the messages throughout the album but the music didn't captivate me in the least. Looked forward to it ending. 1/5

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Tue Oct 12 2021
1

Same beat on every song. Possibly the most forgettable album of all time?

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Fri Oct 15 2021
1

More modern R&B. This album at least is trying to use more interesting instrumentation than some of the others on this list - it's just like other albums on the list similar to this - THERE'S NO TUNES. More interesting / random instrumentation can't make up for the fact that this music is dull. Either I'm getting too old or this music really is as shit as I think it is. And it can't be me. It's the children who are wrong. Best Tracks: Rise; Weary; F.U.B.U.

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Tue Nov 30 2021
1

Absolutely terrible modern R&B.

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Thu Dec 16 2021
1

Pleasant, but immediately forgettable.

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Wed Jan 05 2022
1

I hate interludes. Hard to hear lyrics, too soft voice

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Thu Jan 06 2022
1

The politest thing to say is that this album and style of music is not my thing at all. Losing You from Solanges previous album is a great pop tune. There is nothing on this mid paced dreary r&b follow up that comes anywhere close. The interludes are annoying and the guests do nothing to add to the record. No idea how this could be in the best 1001 anything! One star is generous!

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Tue Jan 11 2022
1

Lyrically was ok, musically it ended and spotify moved on to 4 different artist and I didn't even notice!

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Thu Feb 24 2022
1

What? Why? Just why is this in the list? I can only assume that the collator of the list has some kind of deep love for warbling vibrato.

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Fri Apr 02 2021
5

absolutely love this, listened to it independently for the better part of 2 days

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Tue Apr 27 2021
5

Der Albumtitel sagt ja alles – Politik und Lässigkeit in Perfektion. All diese potenziellen Mega-Banger genau so so zurückzuhalten und einzuzäumen wie die Wut, ist Ausdruck einer Kontrolle, bei der sich jeder weiße Mann in die Hose kacken sollte. Ich guck mal kurz, ob ich Bremsspuren habe.

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Fri Jul 16 2021
5

Not an album I would have picked out but boy I'm glad I've listened its outstanding.

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Mon Aug 16 2021
5

it was amazing better r&b then shit i use to listen

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Sun Aug 22 2021
5

This album was so soulful and smooth. I loved all of it, but my favourite songs are Weary, Cranes In The Sky, Mad featuring Lil Wayne and Don't Touch My Hair. 5/5 stars.

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Sat Oct 09 2021
5

One of the great spiritual balms in this life

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Tue Oct 26 2021
5

Deep and funky. Beyonce might be the Queen, but Solange is amazing.

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Mon Nov 01 2021
5

Aktivisme pakket ind i lækre beats og en vild vokal. R'n'B lige i face. Det er simpelthen bare et virkelig, virkelig godt album!

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Mon Nov 15 2021
5

Shocked I hadn't heard any of this before, but what a damn beautiful voice.

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Mon Nov 15 2021
5

Beautiful and unexpected delight. Will relisten for sure

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Thu Nov 18 2021
5

This album is so generous and heartfelt, I love it.

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Tue Nov 23 2021
5

I love this album a lot. The vocals are sweet, I love the instrumentation, the guest artists are fun, and it is an album with no breaks, more plz

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Mon Jan 10 2022
5

ITS HAPPENING. THIS IS NOT A DRILL. This is one of my favorite albums of all time. When this came out I was just getting into more R&B for the first time and it changed the way I listened to music. I remember listening to this while eating lunch in an enclave at the Nationwide building and then again while working. And then on the drive home. I can’t speak highly enough about this album. Favorite Songs are Weary, Cranes in the Sky, Don't You Wait, Don't Touch My Hair, Where Do We Go From Here, Borderline, Junie, and Don’t Wish Me Well. Basically the entire album is my favorite.

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Sun Jan 16 2022
5

@SHACK says he enjoyed when she punched Jay Z in the face. That's my review. 'ACK.

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Sat Feb 12 2022
5

Pleasantly surprised. Has a really good vibe and super easy to listen to. Melodic and chill.

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Tue Feb 22 2022
5

Loved everything about it! Good songs, good interludes, great lyrics, etc

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Sat Mar 12 2022
5

It took me 3 seconds on the first song to know this was worth 5 stars.

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Tue Apr 05 2022
5

One of my favorite albums ever! It all flows together perfectly and has such interesting and important commentary.

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Thu Aug 18 2022
5

an all-time favourite. hands down. masterpiece.

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Fri Sep 09 2022
5

Beautiful. Insightful, Celebratory, Sadness all in one

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Thu Sep 29 2022
5

Better than Beyonce. Come at me hive.

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Sun Oct 09 2022
5

I have loved some of Solange’s songs - she has some incredible dance remixes that can rip up a dance floor. But I had not idea what lay in store for me on this album. What songs! Deeply personal and moving. Intimate. Honest. Incredible. The music is smooth without being boring. It was engaging and it slowed me down and pulled me deeper into the lyrics. Speaking of lyrics - the thoughts and feelings being expressed take this to an entirely different level. Absolutely amazing accomplishment and a wonderful gift from Solange.

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Sun Oct 09 2022
5

Wow! Smooth and personal. A great listen this morning.

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Sun Oct 09 2022
5

This was definitely a pleasant surprise for me. I have never had any motivation to check out any tunes by Solange. This album was a real treat though. A smooth funk groove with meaningful lyrical content. I really enjoyed it!!

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Wed Nov 02 2022
5

Did not expect to like as much as I did

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Thu Dec 29 2022
5

C’est tres tres bon en loundge musique d’ambiance, j’ai ecoute 2x 4.95

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Wed Jan 18 2023
5

The album that introduced me to Solange. My favorite songs are Don't Touch My Hair, Cranes in the Sky, Mad (featuring Lil Wayne), Borderline (An Ode to Self-Care), and Scales.

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Sun Feb 05 2023
5

Beaucoup aimé cet album. Je l’ai trouvé plein de subtilité et de nuances, avec une portée sociale. Recherche musicale et belle voix sans affectation.

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Sun Feb 26 2023
5

After hearing only great things about Solange, I can honestly say that I am WOWED. She's got a gorgeous voice, her songs & interludes are beautifully told, and the vibe vibe is wonderfully chill. I've officially added her to my library. 4.5 stars *On a separate note, I wish we'd have the ability to edit our reviews since I accidentally hit the vote button before I finished writing my last review.

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Wed Mar 15 2023
5

This album caught me off guard. I didn’t know much about Solange going in except that she was Beyoncé's sister and was in Destiny’s child. I expected the album to sound like the Beyoncé albums that I had heard but this is completely different. It’s a lot more experimental with elements of jazz, Funkadelic and even Aphex Twin. It felt like a concept album all the way to the end. There wasn’t a moment that bored me or a track that I didn’t like. I love how she used vocal her harmonies to add color to a lot of the tracks rather than instrumentation. This is going to be on constant repeat for a while and I’m looking forward to going down the rabbit hole and checking out more of her music.

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Wed Mar 15 2023
5

Great modern R&B album; I honestly prefer this to Beyoncé’s work. It has an impactful message told through amazing songs, ‘Cranes in the Sky’ being a real highlight.

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Wed Apr 05 2023
5

She has a beautiful and powerful voice, it was a pleasure to listen. All of the songs were creating a strong, unite whole. In my opinion it's much better to listen with headphones on.

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Tue Jul 11 2023
5

Oh this is for me right here. The calm rage, the sparse but interesting instrumentals, the great features, the integration of the interview interludes. No wonder this got all the acclaim and love it did!

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Fri Sep 15 2023
5

a really fabulous album, her voice is of course excellent, the production is perfect, and it has a real emotional heart to it. solange has always been underrated.

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Fri Sep 15 2023
5

Really strong album. Doesn’t try to do too much. I’m always gonna be biased towards neo soul, but I really enjoyed this album.

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Thu Sep 21 2023
5

That was beautiful and important.

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Wed Oct 18 2023
5

Would have never listened to this if not for this app. I appreciate her creative vision and disregard for whatever pop junk was trending in 2016. The whole album flows and feels very intentional... nothing by accident. Sometimes that's not a good thing, but in this case, it is. The interludes add depth to the album and give you something to think about in between songs. This really feels like an art piece more than an album at times

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Thu Nov 02 2023
5

So much more my vibe than anything Bey does. Wish she’d put more out.

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Wed Dec 13 2023
5

This was great! Weird I disregarded this release when it came out. Tightly produced neo-soul with ambition and scope.

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Tue Jan 16 2024
5

I can't be the only one more into Solange than Beyonce.

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Tue Mar 05 2024
5

For not being Beyonce, this album is phenomenal.

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Mon Mar 25 2024
5

It’s the greatest album ever

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Fri Mar 29 2024
5

Had no idea this album existed and what a surprise! Lovely instrumentals and vocals, a full trip, rnb that I truly enjoy without getting bored due to the creative beats. Saved basically all the songs.

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Thu Apr 04 2024
5

A beautiful ride from top to bottom. No individual tracks REALLY stood out to me but I enjoyed the ride! - I take it back, don’t wish me well is fireeeee.

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Mon Apr 19 2021
4

This is clearly a great album. Soulful and full of groove!

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Thu Jul 08 2021
4

Good. I have heard of this artist and I have seen this album cover around. Glad I got to listen to it because I enjoyed it and it was good. The features were all good, along with the songs.

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Mon Jun 21 2021
4

2016: Cranes in the Sky, F.U.B.U, Mad

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Wed Apr 07 2021
4

Pretty great blend of r&b, soul, and jazz. Definitely would listen again, and am interested in their other work as well. I'm not sure I can punch it through to 5 stars, but it's a high 4 for sure.

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Tue Apr 27 2021
4

Musik passt sehr gut zum Cover: klar, rein, bisschen edgy aber nicht so dass es das Pop-Publikum verstören würde. Hab ich mal auf großer Bühne live gesehen und wie empfand das alles wie gleichzeitig kaltes klares, aber auch warmes und wohltuendes Wasser. Pastellig aber crisp. Gefällt mir gut und bekommt 3,6 Punkte.

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Tue Apr 27 2021
4

Welch Talent, gepaart mit göttlicher Stimme, variantenreichem Instrumentengerüst, das sicher live auch sehr gut diese in Schönheit verwandelte Wut und Trauer wiedergeben vermag. Bei ihr könnte ich Björk‘hafte Genie Verehrung verstehen; ihre Kunst ist nicht einfach eine Demonstration ihres Könnens, sondern zudem embracing & heartwarming gestaltet, dass ich als seltener Tourist dieses R&B Genres mich gern länger in ihrer Nähe aufhalten möchte. Angenehme 4.1

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Sat May 29 2021
4

Enjoyed this. Its like an Autobiography. the sons are intensely personal. delivered in a funky style of later Prince (especially on "junie". It has moments of intensity "Weary" and also vulnerability on "where do we go". Its a great album. Just a little sad as its mostly about being black in america. 4/5

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