(KRON) — Miguel’s much-anticipated third studio album ‘Wildheart’ dropped this week, as a beautiful ode to California, and a lateral step in Pimentel’s musical ascent.
The albums opening track, ‘A Beautiful Exit’ begins with Baz Luhrmann-esque 90s newsbreaker sound, which immediately turns into heavy metronomed snare and muddy reverberations. Pimentel’s voice is completely out-sung by the low-quality noise pollution that comprises the backdrop to the track, setting the tone for the rest of the album.
Track two, ‘Deal’ is Miguel’s attempt at a rally track which narrowly misses the mark. Lacking in dynamics, the fuzzy amalgamation of soft shouts and underwhelming synth desperately seeks something sharp.
Miguel redeems himself with track three, “The Valley.” This NSFW hit transports you to the bubblegum dark-side of California. While all songs on the album are written by Pimentel, ‘The Valley’ sounds most like what listeners expect of his evolution. Miguel has always been loved for his duality of faith and filth, which this song emits from the velvety start.
‘Coffee,’ the first single before the album’s release, sounds like a tabled single from either of his first two albums. An odd choice for a teaser track, but fans were seemingly receptive.
Now for the reason we all came.
On every single Miguel album, there is one track, one supernova that will undoubtedly be the stand-out. Miguel hides these gems in a bed of b-sides, but they’re not hard to find.
‘All I Want is You’ brought the ubiquitous ‘Sure Thing.’
‘Kaleidoscope Dream’ had ‘Do You,’ arguably the best released song of 2012, and a career high for Miguel.
“Wildheart’ follows suit, with the audio intoxication ‘Flesh.’
‘Flesh’ offers a new sleeker version of primal Miguel, which is what we were waiting for from ‘Wildheart.’