On her new album When I Get Home, Solange Knowles is a visionary, a singer in the key of clairvoyance.
Bigtime contemporary pop, sophisticated, naive, young, wise, mysterious, hot, charismatic, graceful, intelligent.
Her songs touch many different areas of life in the USA, and in the universe – musical, cultural, historical, cosmological.
Her influences flow through the musicianship, and through the musical culture, of a life that she lives to make music.
You can hear the connection with the band in every passage. Improvisation remains amid the discipline of the recording process. The perfection is looser than so much that’s out there today.
The music is profane. It’s a ceremony. It’s a sacrament. It’s the transmission of souls. One to another. Each to all. All to each. These to those.
Solange. The vision is the jam. The sight is the song. The music is home.
In the music, her home is a symbol. It’s the home she makes for herself, in music.
What artist has a home? What composer, what performer, is not at home in the whole world? And also not at home anywhere in it?
Houston, Texas. A lookout, a crush, a long call—no, you hang up first—an impossible promise, a mentor, a spell of boredom, a ghost story, a place to dream, noplace in the world.
To be free. To play free. To bring it back into a groove. To go on for as long as it does. And not, for as long as it doesn’t.
Solange—Solo, as Gucci Mane calls her on “My Skin My Logo”—is a solitaire in contemporary music for sure. And the company she keeps on this record is plentiful, and exquisite—those who walk the Earth and those whose spirits come through in a progression, a lyric, an inflection, a melody.