Is D’Angelo finally back, with a little help from ’90s Seattle stalwarts Soundgarden?
After twelve years, the reclusive soul man is seemingly ready to resurface (even announcing a rare tour), but his initial comeback song is something of an odd surprise: A demo version of a cover of Soundgarden’s 1994 grunge hit “Black Hole Sun.”
Probably as well-known for its creepy David Lynch-meets-David LaChapelle video (the one with the with the happily distorted faces) as for it’s slow-burning chorus, “Black Hole Sun” doesn’t exactly cry out for a swampy, synth-heavy, Prince-on-valium reworking, but D’Angelo did it anyway. His usually spotlighted vocals sound slightly buried, and even a little distorted. The song was leaked, and therefore sounds not-quite-finished, but may offer a glimpse of what he’ll do on his long-awaited follow-up to “Voodoo.”
Hear the song here:
The Roots drummer Questlove revealed to Pitchfork recently that D’Angelo’s next album is “pretty much 97% done. He’s just finishing his lyrics now. He needs somebody to smack him and take the record away from him because it’s pretty much finished.”
Not to oversell the record or anything, he also opined, “For all intents and purposes, this album is the black version of [The Beach Boys’] Smile– at best, it will go down in the ‘Smile’/’There’s a Riot Goin’ On’/Miles Davis’ ‘On the Corner’ category.”
After his sophomore album “Voodoo” sold ten bazillion copies at the turn of the millennium, D’Angelo seemed to drop off the face of the Earth, and has lately only been in the news for all the wrong reasons. But it looks like he’s finally back behind a microphone where he belongs.
Here are D’Angelo’s European dates:
Thurs 26th Jan – Filadelphia Church, Stockhom
Fri 27th Jan – Store VEGA, Copenhagen
Sun 29th Jan – Le Zenith, Paris
Mon 30th Jan – Paradiso, Amsterdam
Tues 31st Jan – Paradiso, Amsterdam
Fri 3rd Feb – O2 Brixton Academy, London
And just in case you forgot Soundgarden’s original version: