Andre 3000 Album Review : "New Blue Sun" - Every Track Ranked
It’s only been a couple of days since Andre 3000 announced his debut solo album and already it’s here! Released today, via Epic Records, this instrumental venture is a testament to the whimsical genius that resides within the legendary André 3000. While I am no expert in flute music, I did play the flute quite well as a kid and in a world where solo André 3000 projects are in short supply, I wasn’t going to let this one go without a review.
The man who once went viral for serenading unsuspecting airport-goers with his flute in 2019 has now turned that flute into a central figure on New Blue Sun. The album, co-produced by the talented Carlos Niño, weaves together woodwinds, guitars, and keyboards to create an ethereal auditory experience.From digital wind instruments to Maya flutes crafted from wood and bamboo, the sheer variety of sounds is a testament to André’s dedication to pushing boundaries.
I admit, I’m not flute music expert but I suspect that will be true for most listeners picking up this album today; so here’s a track by track analysis of my thoughts on each of the songs and how they made me feel as a first time listener.
1: I Swear, I Really Wanted to Make a ‘Rap’ Album But This Is Literally the Way the Wind Blew Me This Time:
A slow and steady start – the track doesn’t hit it’s boiling point until the 8 minute mark but is pleasant throughout. While long, it’s easy listening and will certainly make it into any yoga / meditation playlists out there.
2: The Slang Word P(*)ssy Rolls Off the Tongue with Far Better Ease Than the Proper Word Vagina. Do You Agree?
Andre feels somewhat absent on this track, fluttering in and out until a short jaunt around the 10 minute mark. The tracks title, dare I say, does conjure up teasing imagery as the flute pokes, caresses and flutters around the 12 minute mark. There’s certainly more than meets the ear with this track – I just wish he got there sooner, which might say more about me than the track itself…Moving on.
3: That Night In Hawaii When I Turned Into A Panther And Started Making These Low Register Purring Tones That I Couldn’t Control … Sh¥t Was Wild
This track is certainly more haunting than those that came before it…
This track is more chaotic than the previous track but that’s to be expected from a track titled “BuyPoloDisorder’s Daughter Wears A 3000® Button Down Embroidered”. With so much happening on the track, I find myself not ever truly relaxing into the music, and maybe that’s by design.
At points a lot happens, at others…not so much. I little too “samey” for me.
7: Ants To You, Gods To Who ?
Among my favourite tracks on the album, the music takes us on a journey in an otherworldly realm, persisting in a state of weightlessness while navigating the expanse with Andre 3000. The track exudes a sense that Andre 3000 is guiding us through a compelling journey, and the listener is along for the ride. Ironically, it’s the track I most wish had a rap verse, but also the song that needs it the least.
8: Dreams Once Buried Beneath The Dungeon Floor Slowly Sprout Into Undying Gardens
The conclusion is both pleasant and satisfying, showcasing instruments not previously heard on the album. It serves as a fitting conclusion, especially for those, like myself, experiencing it for the first time.
In the lead-up to the album’s release, Andre 3000’s NPR interview hinted at his nervousness regarding how fans would react to his decision to release a flute-centered album, especially when there was a clear demand for a rap project. This apprehension is understandable. However, what Andre 3000 has presented with this body of work is a pathway for dedicated listeners to explore a genre often perceived as inaccessible to the average audience.
As someone who grew up playing the flute, I can affirm that the instrument was never considered cool by any stretch of the imagination. Yet, through this album, it’s conceivable that Andre 3000’s endorsement could elevate its street credibility more than we realize. Any album capable of introducing a new audience, shaping new memories, forming opinions, or simply pushing a genre into a space where it wasn’t previously acknowledged becomes more significant than its individual components. Therefore, I categorise this album as a success…Now if Mr 3000 could make his way back to the closest studio for a rap album we’ll all be very happy.
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