Album Review: An Evening with Silk Sonic

Anderson+.Paak+and+Bruno+Mars+perform+at+a+live+concert.

Image courtesy of the1a.org

Anderson .Paak and Bruno Mars perform at a live concert.

“An Evening with Silk Sonic” is the debut album for music group Silk Sonic, the collaboration between experienced duo Anderson .Paak and Bruno Mars. 

I had very high expectations upon the release of “An Evening with Silk Sonic”. Although not many people knew it was releasing, I was quite excited for it’s release. Bruno Mars has been a household name since his rise to fame with “Doo-Wops & Hooligans”, his debut album. This featured classics “Grenade” and “Talking to the Moon.” I hadn’t listened to much of Anderson .Paak before this album, but I had heard him featured on songs like “R.N.P.” by Cordae and “Dang!” by Mac Miller. 

The duo released three singles in the months leading up to the album including “Leave the Door Open” and “Smokin Out the Window.” I really enjoyed these,  and along with a lot of the general public, grew excited for the release of the full album. 

“An Evening with Silk Sonic” opens with an introduction from musician and “Blaster of the Universe” Bootsy Collins. Upon my first listen, I didn’t feel like this added much to the album. After listening to the rest of the album, I really appreciated how this track set the tone for the rest of the album. It created a great introduction for the modern take on big band and groovy music. 

Although I really like this album, there were a few tracks that didn’t quite hit the mark for me. Tracks like “Fly as Me” and “777” felt like cheap, cheesy feel-good music. I thought these songs did not go as deep in production as other songs, leaving a lot to be desired. The tracks were fine, they just took away from the journey Anderson and Bruno took me on and they felt like filler.It exceeded my expectations and elevates this album from good to great.

It exceeded my expectations and elevates this album from good to great.”

— Peter Collins

There were also a few tracks that felt average. “Smoking Out the Window” and “Skate” were very mediocre and blended in with the album. They didn’t necessarily degrade the vibe of the album, but these tracks just didn’t add to it at all. I had set a high bar for this album going into it, and these tracks just barely made it over.

The remainder of the album is composed of songs I would consider fantastic. Every song defied my expectations in all aspects. Bruno and Anderson sound incredible, both vocally and lyrically. “Leave the Door Open” and “Put on a Smile” showcase the duo’s songwriting ability very well. On top of these, both artists absolutely killed it on “Blast Off.” The album left on a high note, and all three of these songs will remain on my playlists for a long time.

Finally, that leaves “After Last Night.” This track is utterly incredible. It exceeded my expectations and elevates this album from good to great. The vocals of Anderson and Bruno synergized so well with Thundercat’s background. This track was paced perfectly. It never feels rushed at any point despite the vocals pushing the tempo. I can’t compliment this track enough. If you only have time to listen to one song off of this album, it should be “After Last Night.”

Overall, I really enjoyed listening to this album. All of the tracks flowed together smoothly, creating a continuous listening experience. Although I had high expectations, Mars and .Paak still managed to surpass them. I think that “An Evening with Silk Sonic” should be in the conversation for Album of the Year. I would highly recommend this album to everyone, regardless of whatever music you like listening to.

“An Evening with Silk Sonic” gets an A from me. 

 

Full Track List

Silk Sonic Introduction

Leave the Door Open – 8/10

Fly As Me – 5/10

After Last Night – 11/10

Smokin Out the Window – 7.5/10

Put on a Smile – 8.5/10

777 – 5/10

Skate – 7/10

Blast Off – 9/10