Back in the beginning of April, Eric Bellinger released another album entitled Eazy Call. While we didn’t have a lot to say about it at the time, one of things that we have come to realize is that the singer had combined his more trap aspects more fluidly with the melodic sound that a lot of his early fans fell in love with. Some of whiplash that we got from the previous projects was far less noticeable on that album and we have come to enjoy it more than we thought we would after the first listen. This continues that trend in a lot of ways but shows him leaning further into the melody, making this is most pure R&B project since Eventually.
We understand that, given his high output, you would skeptical about the singer coming out a the same quality of music that he has in the past. It’s a legitimate concern and, for us, probably true (we believe that Bellinger was at peak form for the releases between In The Meantime and Choose Up Season). But this is the kind of thing that can make old fans fall back in love and rediscover him again.
In an odd way, Meditation Music is a hearkening back the days of his freeleases. The sensual babymakers that have just a hint of raunch and still manage to come off as adult are here and he sings them with a voice that has vastly improved over the last few years. The vocal improvement is probably most felt at the end of Massage where he gives us this note that is just has a lot of potential to go wrong but manages to work out with the vibe of the track and the overall buildup. Still, the fact that he has dialed the autotune back means a lot for the sound of this and makes it easier to connect to him as a singer.
While Frequency was a previously released track, everything else here is new and it all combines together pretty well. The production for the tracks is somewhat slow with a lot of ethereal touches. Chakras is the fastest song in the set even though it’s clearly mid-tempo. We wouldn’t say that this lacks bops; it’s incredible how jammable Bellinger can make even the slowest song. You can just as easily see yourself heading to the dancefloor for these track as you would to the bedroom. That gives this a lot more moods for playability and also makes it really easy for your favorite track to shift depending on your mood.
Lyrically, if you’ve heard anything else by Bellinger then you know what you’re going to get. He doesn’t really explore new territory in songs very often but he does make old territory a lot more appealing. He has a way with words that can go from flipping a cliche into something new to just a phrase that makes you think of something a little different and it makes the whole song light up. That is the strength of his pengame and it is on fire here.
While we know that he won’t heed our advice to take some time off and chill with his family, we do hope that he does take some downtime to explore where his music can grow from here. Even though he is a good songwriter for other people, he is one of the few who can actually perform his songs better than most people he would hand it over to. We want to see what he can do once he has incorporated a little more out-of-studio and non-performance life into what he’s doing now.
Our favorite songs are Hours and Massage.