September 11, 1995 12:00 PM


D’Angelo has got some nerve. On the hit title tune, the singer-songwriter raves about “brown sugar”—that’s up-to-the-second street slang for marijuana—like he just can’t get enough of the stuff. The 21-year-old Richmond, Va., native even personifies it as a virtual super-woman who “love[s] me right down to my knees.” The funky little number, with its woozy bass texture, even sounds a bit under the influence, and it immediately sets D’Angelo apart from R&B’s connect-the-dots pack. So does the rest of this ambitious debut. Especially rhythmic, gospellaced cuts like “Alright” and “Higher,” on which D’Angelo’s tenor flutters as if he’s possessed by Al Green’s holy spirit and Marvin Gaye’s sacred sensuality. (EMI)

You May Like