First Impression: Maxwell – blackSUMMERS’night

Written by on July 1, 2016


Well just like that 7 short years later Maxwell has returned with the second disc of his trilogy blackSUMMERS’night. Last time we had a new set from Maxwell, Michael Jackson had just passed away, now he returns with SUMMERS’ a few months after we lost Prince. I’m not liking these coincidences.

blackSUMMERS’night was supposed to drop a few years ago according to Maxwell. However, in typical Maxwell fashion, he had the world waiting until the crock pot was done slow-cooking. And the result is a disc that can’t seem to take flight.

One thing with Maxwell albums is that upon first listen they immediately grab my attention. And after the release of Lake By The Ocean I had high expectations for what the crooner will offer us this time around. The first single “Lake By The Ocean” was a smart release. The song returned to the traditional Maxwell style, a nice “Maybe You” tempo of a song. Enough to get his fans attention, but not enough to garner any new ones.

However, for the most part, that is the best the album can offer. Songs like “III” and “Lost” really never gain much traction as it sort of just meanders along not hurting the project, but also not making the listeners stop and grab the album cover with a slight grin moment.

The problem I have with this new album is that it never really heats up like a Maxwell album should. It this was a pot of red beans, the homie left his shit on simmer for the whole damn day. Yeah, it might finally reach a point where the dish is good, but you your stomach will start eating your backbone before you get a plate. Whereas Embrya and Urban Hang Suite let the funk flow as soon as you turned the oven on.

But I am not saying all of this to call the album wack. He delivers with songs like “1990x”, “Gods,” “Of All Kind” and “Fingers Crossed”. Those songs give you a nice flashback to the Maxwell that you know and love.

All and all blackSUMMERS’night isn’t bad, but it isn’t great. It sort of just is; which is disappointing in itself. Especially since we waited 7 years for it. Hopefully, NIGHT will reign supreme.


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