After nearly 13 years since D’Angelo’s last release, it’s good to hear two things about the album – one, its almost finished (well we've been hearing this for a while now) and two, it’s sure to be another classic, at least according to ?uestlove.
The Roots drummer and producer, has been working very closely with the neo-soul singer on his latest project, helping to produce records for the much-anticipated D’Angelo album. So if there were anyone who would know the status on the singer’s third album it would most definitely be him.
He recently confirmed to Billboard Magazine that the album was near completion. "I'm heading out to Asia right now praying that we're still on schedule for when we said we were going to turn that record in,” said Questlove to the music magazine. "All last week, I was in the studio finishing (the album). We spent close to 18 hours, well not me personally because I have to go to 'Fallon,' but usually right after work. He's the only person that I'll actually go to the studio with and stay there to six in the morning, re-doing these drum parts. I won't even do that for my own band, but I'll do it for him. Right now, we're just tightening up the loose ends. But I still stand by, 99% of it is done."
Both D’Angelo albums – Brown Sugar (1995) and Voodoo (2000) have had amazing reviews, considered classic by many, and helped to bring neo-soul to the forefront of the music scene. Brown Sugar debuted at number six on the US Billboard Top R&B Albums chart and was nominated for 4 Grammys. Rolling Stone called it, “a reminder of where R&B has been and, if the genre is to resurrect its creative relevance like a phoenix rising from the ashes, where it needs to go.” His sophomore album was even more of a success, The certified platinum album, debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart, earned him his first Grammys – for Best R&B Album and Best Male R&B Vocal Performance for “Untitled (How Does it Feel)” – and dubbed a “masterpiece” among music’s top critics. As a result, fans expect and hope for nothing less than a masterpiece from the D’Angelo. Assuring fans their wait will be worth it, Questlove has already called the almost-finished album a classic.
“I would not be far off by saying this is probably my generation's version of Sly (and the Family Stone's) 'There's a Riot Goin' On.' It's potent. It's funky. It's an extremely hard pill to swallow. He's one of those artists that have, of course, taken 13 years to follow up a record. It's going to take you about 10 years to digest this record. Totally brilliant. Just the way this society works with music… being able to judge if something is a classic after the first listen, you can do that after thirty seconds on this. And the fact that we started this record in 2004, and it still sounds like it came out five years from now, it is a testament to the timelessness of it."
The in-house drummer for Late Night with Jimmy Fallon also strongly suggested that the album should be released by February of this year.
"If this record is not turned in by February, then something is extremely wrong. Because we worked to the bone in the entire month of January just to tighten up all the loose ends."
The wait seems to be almost over for what appears to be another D’Angelo classic.