I often get slightly perturbed when folks ask, "Where is all the real music? What happened to it? Why can't I find it?" Moments like these make me glad I have some decency; rather than get salty and yell back, "It ain't gone nowhere fool, stop being stuck on your radio!"...I simply point out the good music that's available right now. Case in point? The new album from Tank, "Now or Never." Real R&B 'never' sounded so good.
The whole project is your traditional male R&B album, but done so well and executed with such finesse that even the thought of calling the project "another R&B album" hesitates to enter your mind. All the time-tested favorite production sounds and overall urban vibe are there, and considering that so many Urban male artists have crossed over into Pop-land, it's truly a great thing to see Tank stick to his guns and his musical roots. The vocal production does venture into some very provocative territory, with chord clusters and harmonization that call to mind the Brandy-Darkchild "Full Moon" days. Female fans will be happy to note that Tank does not disappoint when it comes to music that paints vivid pictures of love, sex, and relationships, both good & bad, and musicians all around are bound to appreciate his dedication to great singing and well-thought-out ornamentation.
My personal favorite record on this album is Tank's cover of "I Can't Make You Love Me," originally written & performed by music icon, Bonnie Raitt. The treacherous territory of taking on such a timeless song, especially when it's original version is a statement in Pop music, is finding your own voice while simultaneously giving the music & lyrics new life. I can state with little reservation that Tank's version is the best male reinterpretation of the record out there; there isn't much to say about where he's coming from when he sings, other than he just gets it, and thus the delivery is an example of a real artist taking on good music and winning.
You can pick up your copy of "Now or Never" by clicking the link above. Tank is on Twitter, and you can follow him @TheRealTank. His video for the song, "Sex Music," is below, for those who haven't caught it. Make sure to support this brutha in his musical endeavors. Score one more for real music!