It Is Time for a Love Revolution
Lenny Kravitz has always been as much a rock historian as a rock performer. His albums pay homage to the past, featuring arrangements deliberately and directly lifted from classic rock and R&B influences that could never escape the notice of learned music fans. Not that he’s ever tried to disguise his fixations. He’s proudly held to his values and yet kept his sound contemporary. 2008’s Love Revolution is no exception. Kravitz’s lead guitar tones are pure ‘70s guitar hero. His funk grooves lift from Led Zeppelin (“Will You Marry Me”), David Bowie (“Dancin’ Til Dawn”) and the Red Hot Chili Peppers (“Love Love Love”). His lyrics tend towards simple, easy rhymes, even when projecting onto bigger themes, such as the Iraq-inspired “Back In Vietnam,” but his expert musical craftsmanship keeps things sharp. (The guitar work on “If You Want It” is exemplary.) Kravitz’s flair for making each move larger than life means even his ballads possess an epic quality. “A Long and Sad Goodbye” is a seven-minute tribute to his father. “A New Door” uses piano and strings for great dramatic effect, as Kravitz turns on the lite-FM syrup.