Daniel Merriweather - Love & War
- Artist: Daniel Merriweather
- Album: Love & War
- Label: J Records
- Year of Release: 2010
- ME Rating:
- Reviewed by: carlita on 2012-05-17
Although you couldn't go anywhere back in 2007 without hearing Daniel Merriweather, who featured on Mark Ronson's Smiths' cover hit, "Stop Me", you may or may not know 2010's "Love & War". Produced by Ronson, the record has some of the trademark retro pop soul one would come to expect from the guy that dominated the airwaves for a good block of time in the early to mid ‘00s, working with other soul singer imports. The concept of suffering/benefitting from love and war in the same realm has been used many times but his take on it is still poignantly honest as a 20-something dealt a crushing blow after the end of a tumultuous relationship.
If you like the 60's Motown Temptations/Smokey Robinson shiny suits/slick hair "My Girl", 70's "Talking Book" era Stevie Wonder with a dash of 80's Terence Trent D'Arby; check this out. Featuring two great collabos with Wale (DC rapper who shot to #1 with Miguel recently) called "Change" which pauses the retro-style production and love talk to offer some commentary about our hypocritical value system and "Water and a Flame" with Adele, before she conquered the world singing about similar heartbreak you'll find here. Hearing some noise from other critics about Daniel not showing enough passion to make the soul authentic on the album, I am confused and not sure if we all listened to the same album. Seeing him live at his sold-out show at the Troubadour and a taping at the Viper Room a few years ago, Daniel can really emotionally sing, period.
From the jump, on "For Your Money", you can picture the forlornness being in a foreign place, broke, feeling emotive turmoil. Other highlights include "Red" with lyrics like "you see the pictures but you don't know their names" implying when a relationship is dying, two people can be complete strangers, "Live By Night" and ass-shake-inducing "Chainsaw" which suggest that dude's well aware of the pain caused by a failing love but will still come back for more anyway. Yes, the truth hurts and Love & War points out the times we've been blindly foolish in life that's "like a cassette we cannot rewind".
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