Spun: Musiq Soulchild

“Sorry if I come off disrespectful or my convo is a little bit too sexual,” sings Musiq Soulchild on “b.u.d.d.y.,” the first track on his album Lovanmusiq. A line like this has to be intended ironically. The sexual innuendo in R&B singer Musiq’s lyrics is so mild and the devotion to women so strong, it’s hard to believe anyone could be offended by it. Belonging to a genre often subject to lewdness and misogyny, Musiq could likely win the approval of both the National Organization of Women and the Christian Coalition–a somewhat refreshing change from the norm. But that doesn’t make Lovanmusiq a great album.

The very title of the song, “Lullaby,” is an apt description of the album, most of which is so gentle and homogenous it could put any listener to sleep. Songs like “Betterman” have good beats, but are all too rare, and have the same lack of lyrical edge. Doesn’t Musiq ever wish he could remain the same man he’s always been? Does he not feel a twinge of doubt that he’ll still love the same woman when they’re “old and gray,” or at least a little apprehensive about becoming old and gray?

Truly soulful music requires a greater mix of emotions than those on display here. Kudos to Musiq Soulchild for not copying the crassness of his peers, but a sense of emotional conflict is an asset for a musician of his kind, rather than a drawback.

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