- Ryan Arnold
Album Review: Aloe Blacc - 'All Love Everything'
Times are hard, and 2020 has been an unprecedented year full of heartache and dread. During a time upended by a global pandemic and racial injustice, Aloe Blacc returns to the mic with a heartfelt message full of love and hope. "All Love Everything" marks a return for the Grammy-nominated singer, seven years after releasing his last proper album, “Lift Your Spirit.” (He also released a Christmas album in 2018.)
Blacc kicks off the LP with the bass-heavy and harmonizing first song, "Family." "I read my little ones to sleep / Put my face right next to theirs to feel them breathe / I'm gonna show them how to dream." The second song on the album, "All Love Everything" is full of good vibrations and sweet melodies that will calm your mind. This catchy R&B tune will fill your heart with joy, igniting a spark like a stick of dynamite.
The lyrics in "My Way" hit all of the 2020 blues, yet they are upheld by a rosy beat and a soothing voice from Blacc. The track also touches on deeply personal experiences by the singer, like what it means to be Black in America. "I've been sad, I've been lost / I've been down and out and lonely, hey / I've been suffering at a job in a world that tries to own me." Yet, Blacc tackles these hardships with a hopeful vision of determination and justice. "But when I wake up every morning there's an image of a better place." The song’s music video was released over the summer during a time that our country was grappling with social unrest and calls for racial justice marching throughout the streets.
"Wherever You Go," "Nothing Left but You" and "Glory Days" feature pop-infused melodies and lyrics that spark a visual splendor for your ears. Blacc's poetic blend of positivity and warmth will slap a smile on your face and chill your bones. Listen to these lyrics from "Wherever You Go": "You don't even know how broken you are / But I can still see the smile in your scars." While "Glory Days" leads our worried travelers out of a maze: "Welcome to the glory days / We finally made it out the maze / The memories never fade away."
In "I Do" and "Corner," Blacc slows things down with sweet and sincere melodies that paint a beautiful portrait of love. The music video for "I Do" displays Blacc and his wife Maya Jupiter’s wedding day.
Featuring an upbeat rustic folk theme, "Hold On Tight" is my favorite song on the album. The track blurs out these difficult times with a message of better days coming. The song starts with the strumming of a bass guitar into the great abyss. "Harvard" ends this glorious new album on an acoustic blend of dreams and lost love. "Everybody's got their coffee stains / I can't forget, the words she said remain."
So, if you are feeling blue and need something to uplift your melancholy spirits, then I suggest listening to Blacc's "All Love Everything." It is a soul-searching offering that will purify your heart and calm your spirit during these troubling times.