Maxwell, "Embrya" (1998) [Nostalgic.Nightfalls]
Granted, Urban Hang Suite was a tough act to follow. On top of that, the time period between his debut album released in 1996 and his sophomore effort in 1998 was the shortest stretch Maxwell ever took in his career to make a brand-new album. The result? A beloved cult classic that failed to impress many others. Many critics said that Maxwell's inability to write memorable melodies was fully exposed on this groove-based joint, as he obviously decided to keep his focus on creating a light-as-air, intoxicating dream-like ambience throughout the album, extremely easygoing, mesmerizing the listeners could drown deep in it. That doesn't make this a bad album--on the contrary, it's the opposite. Great concept albums take time to be appreciated, and so does Embrya. Be your own judge.
🔑 Tracks: "Drowndeep:Hula"; "Matrimony: Maybe You"
Update: [Nostalgic.Nightfalls] is a new series that I'm starting on this blog. When I'm feeling underwhelmed by the current releases, instead of forcing myself to vomit out words in order to describe how I feel about an album that I'm not too hot on either way, I'm just going to do a little soul-searching and time-travel back to some earlier days for a timeless favorite of mine. I guess I'll say a thing or two about why I think these works were and still are great. -X.