R&B, Blues, Soul & Stax

VOICES Notes and news on R&B, Blues, Soul & Stax releases

What To Expect

23 NOV 09 DAVID NATHAN

Angie Stone has established herself as a consistently popular contemporary soulstress with a handful of albums before she joined Stax. Unexpected, the singer-songwriter's sophomore set for the label and follow-up to 2007's The Art Of Love & War, has a soulful flow that earmarks it as possibly her best work to date.

Its recording came at a difficult time for the South Carolina native. Midway through cutting the album, Stone's father passed away unexpectedly, giving rise to the record's title. She imbued her work with renewed faith and determination. The result is a blend of old school slow jamsĀ  and new school grooves that validate her stance as a woman who makes music for everyday folks, from the sexy "Kiss Me All Over" to the reflective "Maybe," a gorgeous standout.

Self-assured, "I Don't Care" is Stone's personal testimony as isĀ  "Think Sometimes," clearly dedicated to her father. Young and old will relate the lyrical honesty of "Why Is It," the age-old story of a past lover attempting to step back in, but way too late. Personally, "I Found A Keeper" is a favorite, with its Bobby Womack vibe and back-in-the-day sensibility and as an entire album, Unexpected is indeed, a keeper, a solid statement that Stone is hitting her creative stride.

in this playlist.