Two years have passed since Miguel‘s last album, Wildheart. With Wildheart, the R&B singer solidified himself as a household name for the genre. The album was heralded as one of the best of 2015 and even earned him two Grammy nominations. With War & Leisure, Miguel is aiming to add another Grammy nomination to his list. His fourth album is more politically-driven than any of his previous albums, but fans should not be too worried about it being a drastic change from Miguel’s style. This album is still full of charisma, beautiful melodies, and sex appeal.
The album opens up with the song, “Criminal,” which is the perfect song for Rick Ross to be featured on. The song has a grim and dark theme behind it, but Miguel is able to use his sultry voice to mask it like a serial killer similar to Friday the 13th‘s character, Jason. The song allows Miguel to show how he’s not afraid to to let fans know of the darker tone for the album but still provides his signature style. The vibe of the album makes a complete 180 with “Pineapple Skies” following right after. If “Criminal” was not to your liking, then “Pineapple Skies” is the chaser to make everything be alright. Everything about the song plays up Miguel’s strengths with hints of his mixture of psychedelic R&B. His silky smooth hooks and everything else about the song makes the comparisons between him and Prince grow even stronger.
The album is filled with impressive features, including Travis Scott, Kali Uchis, and J.Cole. War & Leisure is up to par with Wildheart thanks to its darker tone, social and political consciousness, and you even get to hear Miguel speak in a Spanish with Kali Uchis. The album closes with the song “Now,” where Miguel sings about the “CEO of the free world” mentioning the border wall, the flood in Houston, and even, the devastation experienced in Puerto Rico. This is such a powerful and touching album. Miguel shows his fans on War & Leisure that he can balance heavier subject material while still providing them with what they want.
If you’re a fan of the album or Miguel, make sure to catch him in a city near you for his War & Leisure tour!
Favorite Songs: “Pineapple Skies”, “Sky Walker”, “Come Through and Chill”