Darkness And Light (A review of the new John Legend album)

I wonder if John Legend introduces himself as “Legend. John Legend”

I would.

My first introduction to the R&B singer’s music was with his 2013 album “Love In The Future.” I know. I’m Suuuuuuper late jumping on the J Leg train. You’ll find that’s a trend with me since my love for music didn’t become fully realized until around age 14 (I’m 22). More on that in a different post. Right now let’s talk about Darkness And Light!

I consider myself fairly knowledgeable of John Legend’s music. Although I haven’t heard every album, (Still need to listen to “Get Lifted”) I can confidently say he is my favorite R&B artist. I think my favorite album of his before D & L was probably Evolver. I base that off of the fact that I like almost every song on the album. Love in The Future was great but I only liked 5 or 6 of the songs.

In recent years it has become more popular to have an album comprised of singles.

By that I mean songs which have stand-alone value separate from the cohesive whole.

Unlike the records of old, (think Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of The Moon) these albums don’t usually follow a lyrical or melodic theme and rarely will one song seamlessly seep into the next.

Darkness and Light is a bit of a departure from this trend. At first listen, I immediately recognized the melodic theme. Most of the songs are bass, synth and voice driven (which I love!) There is a lot of piano (it wouldn’t be John Legend without piano!) and some organ lending support as well.

I give it an 8.5 out of 10 overall.

My Favorite 100 Songs Of All Time

When I was trying to decide what my first post on Daniel’s iPod should be, I thought what better introduction to the blog than a list of my favorite songs of all time!

It proved to be a more difficult task than I had imagined. At first I thought it would be difficult to find 100 songs that I liked that much so I thought I might just do top 50.

As I was going through my library however, my list became close to 150 and it could have easily been much larger. Therefore I had to eliminate some of my favorite songs in favor of a shorter list.

I decided to arrange the songs in groups of ten, ranking them from top 10 through top 100. That is the only ranking that exists here, the individual songs are listed in no particular order.

Without further ado, behold, my favorite 100 songs of all time!

TOP TEN

Yellow – Coldplay (Parachutes, 2000)
Viva La Vida – Coldplay (Viva La Vida, 2008)
Runaway – Kanye West (My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, 2010)
Delicate – Damien Rice (O, 2002)
Gravity – John Mayer (Continuum, 2006)
The Best Day – Taylor Swift (Fearless, 2008)
Sparks – Coldplay (Parachutes, 2000)
Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want – The Smiths (Pretty In Pink, 1989)
Clair De Lune – Debussy
Tear Down The House – The Avett Brothers (The Second Gleam, 2006)

 

TOP TWENTY

Sex On Fire – Kings Of Leon (Only By The Night, 2008)
Alice – Tom Waits
Lean On Me – Bill Withers
9 Crimes – Damien Rice (9, 2006)
Come Thru – Drake (Nothing Was The Same, 2013)
You Rock My World – Michael Jackson
Unaware – Allen Stone (Self Titled, 2011)
When You Were Young – The Killers (Sam’s Town, 2006)
Til Kingdom Come – Coldplay (X&Y, 2005)
Say It Ain’t So – Weezer (The Blue Album, 1994)

 

TOP THIRTY

Gimme All Your Love – Alabama Shakes (Sound & Color, 2015)
Hold On – Alabama Shakes (Boys & Girls, 2012)
You Could Be Happy – Snow Patrol (Eyes Open, 2006)
The Wind – Allen Stone (Self Titled, 2011)
Murder In The City – The Avett Brothers (The Second Gleam, 2008)
Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe – Kendrick Lamar (Good Kid M.A.A.D City, 2012)
Tunnel Vision – Justin Timberlake (The 20/20 Experience, 2013
Sex – The 1975 (Self Titled, 2013)
Car Radio – Twenty One Pilots (Vessels, 2013)
Holocene – Bon Iver (Self Titled, 2011)


TOP FORTY

Bring Your Love To Me – The Avett Brothers (Magpie And The Dandelion, 2013)
Still – Ben Folds (The Best Imitation Of Myself, 2011)
Ain’t No Sunshine – Bill Withers
Grey Room – Damien Rice (9, 2006)
Sunday Morning Coming Down – Johnny Cash
Creep – Radiohead
Mary’s Song – Taylor Swift (Self Titled, 2006)
Slow Dancing In A Burning Room – John Mayer (Continuum, 2006)
Blood On The Leaves – Kanye West (Yeezus, 2013)
Furthest Thing – Drake (Nothing Was The Same, 2013)


TOP FIFTY

Short Skirt/Long Jacket – Cake (Comfort Eagle, 2001)
The Scientist – Coldplay (A Rush Of Blood To The Head, 2002)
Fix You – Coldplay (X&Y, 2005)
I’d Rather Go Blind – Etta James
In The Air Tonight – Phil Collins
Helplessness Blues – Fleet Foxes (Helplessness Blues, 2011)
Hallelujah – Leonard Cohen
The Luckiest – Ben Folds (Rockin’ The Suburbs, 2001)
Don’t Stop Me Now – Queen
Ambitionz az a ridah – 2Pac


TOP SIXTY

Fine China – Chris Brown (X, 2014)
The Hardest Part – Coldplay (X&Y, 2005)
The Resistance – Drake (Thank Me Later, 2010)
All Me – Drake (Nothing Was The Same, 2013)
Rivers & Roads – The Head And The Heart (Self Titled, 2009)
Lost In My Mind – The Head And The Heart (Self Titled, 2009)
Daughters – John Mayer (Heavier Things, 2003)
Wet Dreamz – J. Cole (2014 Forest Hills Drive, 2014)
Suit & Tie – Justin Timberlake (The 20/20 Experience, 2013)
Ms. Jackson – Outkast


TOP SEVENTY

Someone Like You – Adele (21, 2011)
Don’t Panic – Coldplay (Parachutes, 2000)
Un-thinkable – Alicia Keys (The Element of Freedom, 2011)
Comfortable – John Mayer (Inside Wants Out, 1999)
Addiction – Kanye West (Late Registration, 2005)
Billie Jean – Michael Jackson
Swimming Pools (Drink) – Kendrick Lamar (Good Kid M.A.A.D City, 2012)
Lost Without You – Robin Thicke
Hopeless Wanderer – Mumford & Sons (Babel, 2012)
22 – Night Beds (Country Sleep, 2013)


TOP EIGHTY

Poison & Wine – The Civil Wars (Barton Hollow, 2011)
Still D.R.E. – Dr Dre (2001, 1999)
Mine – Beyonce (Self Titled, 2013)
Damn Your Eyes – Etta James
I Don’t Trust Myself With Loving You – John Mayer (Continuum, 2006)
White Winter Hymnal – Fleet Foxes (Self Titled, 2008)
It Ain’t Me Babe – Johnny Cash
Love Lockdown – Kanye West (808s & Heartbreak, 2008)
If I Believe You – The 1975 (I Like It When You Sleep For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It, 2016)
Addict With A Pen – Twenty One Pilots (Self Titled, 2009)


TOP NINETY

Really Love – D’Angelo
Blessings – Chance The Rapper (Coloring Book, 2016)
Doing It Wrong – Drake (Take Care, 2011)
If I Ain’t Got You – Alicia Keys (The Diary Of Alicia Keys, 2003)
Flashing Lights – Kanye West (Graduation, 2007)
Me Liquor And God – Night Beds (Ivywild, 2015)
Style – Taylor Swift (1989, 2014)
Rich Niggaz – J. Cole (Born Sinner, 2013)
Arizona – Kings Of Leon (Because Of The Times, 2009)
Beverly Hills – Weezer (Make Believe, 2005)

TOP ONE HUNDRED

Tennessee Whiskey – Chris Stapleton (Traveller, 2015)
Heartless – Kanye West (808s & Heartbreak, 2008)
Alien Girl – Kendrick Lamar (Overly Dedicated, 2010)
Seratonin – Night Beds (Ivywild, 2015)
Notorious Thugs – The Notorious B.I.G.
Misguided Ghosts – Paramore (Brand New Eyes, 2009)
Where Is My Mind? – Pixies
Robbers – The 1975 (Self Titled, 2013)
How Long Will They Mourn Me? – 2Pac
The Piano Has Been Drinking – Tom Waits

 

My motive in creating this was to give any future readers of this blog an idea for my taste in music so that one may judge my opinions accordingly.

I hope you found it enlightening!

*Stay tuned for a Spotify playlist containing these songs*