Miguel maintains a certain luster on War and Leisure. His crystalline voice and acrobatic melodies are constantly accompanied by a Tame Impala-esque Rock&B warmth, but the album didn’t shatter anything on it’s high risk December release date and it’s reliance on vibes seems to see it doomed to fade from memory.
Single Told You So sticks out with it’s high pitched angular synth line, breezy guitar sound, and punchy hook. Admittedly the video’s political aspirations seem over blown–you can’t just throw in the word “doublespeak” dude–but as a sort of modernized rockist, prince hit, it burns.
Elsewhere, Miguel wanders at a slower tempo, lacking memorability. Opener Criminal stunts his success over a sparse landscape, rehashed by its colder kindred spirit Anointed. Wolf and Harem both bore at the heart of the project. Caramelo Duro is a close second to Told You So’s urgency with a nice Kali Uchis feature, but king-of-the-boring-beat J Cole pulls through for the appropriately drably named “Come Through and Chill” right after, softening the blow.
It’s a decent place to vibe, but War and Leisure’s highlights are few and far between.