Seal [1991]

Seal [1991]

English singer Seal’s audacious debut turns his wide-ranging knowledge of the ‘90s musical landscape—thudding electronics, plush synth-pop, deeply felt R&B—into an album that balances on big beats while being carried along by his raspy instrument and thoughtful lyrics. The kaleidoscopic “Crazy” marries his depictions of life’s breaking points to dizzying synths; “Killer” places booming rhythms underneath his ruminations on the world’s ills. “Violet,” which closes out the album, simmers with hope, its Quiet Storm-recalling thrum adding heat to its humanistic optimism.

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