R&B | Soul | Funk
Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak; two household names in the funk & soul sphere. While both are incredible in their own right, some readers will know how much of a fan I am of Anderson. Paak especially. Nevertheless, both of these artists have chosen late 2021 as their time to come together, and help each other in creating their love-struck project, An Evening With Silk Sonic.
As the title suggests, this collaboration between both artists is dubbed as Silk Sonic; an alias/supergroup of sorts. To further boost the immersion of this album, and to make it more of an “experience”, we also get Bootsy Collins acting as a sort of narrator for the album.
Our first taste of the album to come arrived much earlier this year. It was a teaser track, titled “Leave The Door Open”. At the time, I assumed this to be a one-off collaborative single shared by Anderson .Paak and Bruno Mars. However, it was the heralding sign of something much greater. This track does a marvellous job of giving its listeners that love-sick and magical atmosphere that we would later discover is the icing that laces the vast majority of the album.
And while the three teaser tracks (and the intro as well), were spread quite thin across nearly the entirety of the year, I ended up glad that these two decided to release An Evening With Silk Sonic so close to the end of 2021. This indeed feels like the time of year that everyone is more loving towards one-another; mainly due to the Christmas period. However, with the sound that this Silk Sonic album is laying onto us, those feelings can only be elevated to even greater heights.
But honestly, this thing really does carry this kind of musical magic. And in doing so, also compliments the individual styles of both Anderson .Paak and Bruno Mars. We have a good mixture of upbeat, groovy, and feel-good tracks (much like what you’d expect to hear on Anderson .Paak’s own material), and the more soulful slow-burners that shine a light on Mars’ amazing vocal range. While I don’t normally listen to Bruno Mars very actively, I have to give credit where credit’s due, and say that some of his high-notes are phenomenal; namely on tracks like “Smokin Out The Window” and “Skate”.
That isn’t to say, however, that Anderson .Paak doesn’t do his bit vocally; because he most certainly does. In fact, he is the one to really credit for giving the album a more grounded, and frankly, enjoyable layer overall.
And while almost every song on this project is a brilliant listen, I feel that the track that does the best job at complimenting both artists would have to be “After Last Night”. Oddly enough, this track also features none other than Thundercat, which is only more of an incentive for me to deem this track as one of the album’s highlights.
Nevertheless, I feel that Bruno Mars, Anderson .Paak, and the Silk Sonic alias they have created together have absolutely knocked it out of the park regarding this album and it’s vibrantly loving and wondrous feel. It’s most certainly a show-stopping way of heralding the conclusion of what has been a truly phenomenal musical year.
Favourite Tracks: After Last Night | Smokin Out The Window | Blast Off
Least Favourite Track: Put On A Smile
Aftermath Entertainment | Atlantic Recording Corporation
Enjoyment: 8/10 | Memorability: 9/10 | Atmosphere: 10/10
Uniqueness: 7/10 | Satisfaction: 9/10 | Narrative: 9/10