Bridges has held onto pieces of his old self while giving himself a remix
Lucy Wynne
10:51 19th July 2021

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American soul/ R&B singer, songwriter, and record producer Leon Bridges is back with his third album, Gold-Diggers Sound, out on 23 July. Bridges had such success with both his 2015 debut Coming Home and 2018 sophomore album Good Thing, that he was nominated for a Grammy for both. Hopefully, three is a charm and Bridges can claim the Grammy this time around. Third time lucky!

When comparing Bridges’ debut, Coming Home, to Gold-Diggers Sound you can’t help but notice the dramatic musical shift. The shift has moved from a vibrant take on the swinging sixties to progressive R&B, but authentically, Bridges makes it work. His second album, Good Thing, works as an endorsement of his range and he has carried that on to Gold-Diggers Sound but with a more solidified sound.

The air of romance in Bridges lyrics is still very prevalent, just as it was in the previous two albums; track ‘WDYTM’ is an acronym for ‘Why Don’t You Touch Me’ and showing the romantic side that he holds on to so dearly. The themes in the album change though; on June 8, 2020, Bridges and Terrace Martin released a single titled ‘Sweeter’ (also on the album) in response to the murder of George Floyd on May 25, a heart-breaking track about racism and police brutality, and hoping to move forward from the darker days.

Straying away from his traditional uplifting decadent tunes, Bridges has held on to a few pieces of his old self, but he has definitely given himself a remix since his soulful ‘Coming Home’ debut. The reinvention beholds modern alternative R&B jams with a pop twist such as ‘Motorbike’, ‘Sho Nuff’, ‘Steam’ and ‘Don’t Worry’ (ft. Ink). Gold-Diggers Sound is a very laid-back, easy listening album; there’s no particular ‘wow factor’ however, I respect the progression developments and experimentation since his debut. Modern progressive R&B is very on-trend at the moment but at some point, I would love to see Bridges revisit his ‘Coming Home’ era because I feel soul is where he is truly at home.

Gold-Diggers Sound is out 23 July.

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Photo: Press