Comet, Come to Me
Comet, Come to Me is all-star bassist Meshell Ndegeocello’s 11th release. Its brilliance is enhanced by special guests Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond), Detroit soul-funk player Amp Fiddler, Laurel Canyon psychedelic shaman Jonathan Wilson, and Texas blues rocker Doyle Bramhall, along with longtime collaborators Christopher Bruce on guitar, Jebin Bruni on keyboards, and Earl Harvin on drums. Here, she starts with an austere update on Whodini’s “Friends” before offering up artful, deceptively laid-back, and carefully arranged originals that extend on the beauty of 2009’s Devil’s Halo and 2011’s Weather, as if she were completing a trilogy. Even when she nails a funky groove on the title track, it’s as a passing notion on her way to smoothness. The emotional intensity under these pretty surfaces can be shocking. “Good Day Bad” suggests a battle with the bottle. “Conviction” throws in a solid rhythm guitar to move the rhythm forward on a nasty look at a “friend” slipping into old love habits. “Modern Times” opts out of the rat race in no uncertain terms.