Albums to watch


Michael Kiwanuka


Third album of modern soul from the London-based singer-songwriter produced by Danger Mouse and Inflo

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  1. 10.0 |   Q

    However bad things get, Kiwanuka wants you to feel better. Print edition only

  2. 10.0 |   The Line Of Best Fit

    This is an exceptionally compelling, absorbing, rich, and genuinely human piece of work
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  3. 10.0 |   NME

    Looking ahead even as he evokes the work of greats as such as Bill Withers and Gil Scott-Heron, Michael Kiwanuka's bravura self-titled record sees him fiercely reclaim his identity
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  4. 10.0 |   The Guardian

    The soulful singer’s third LP is timeless and contemporary at the same time, with shades of everything from What’s Going On to Screamadelica
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  5. 10.0 |   Evening Standard

    Retro, raucous, and very special indeed
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  6. 9.0 |   Uncut

    Kiwanuka is loaded with memorable songs, but the best way to experience them is by listening to the album from start to finish
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  7. 9.0 |   Exclaim

    It's honest, psychedelic, enlightening and recalls blackness defined by acoustic folk and the organic soul of past artists like Gil Scott-Heron, Bobby Womack and Otis Redding
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  8. 9.0 |   Gigwise

    Blending the personal, political, and pure to dazzling effect
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  9. 9.0 |   God Is In The TV

    You will be inspired by his respectful, authentic and memorable nod to his old soul idols (from Gil Scott-Heron to Bobby Womack) but most importantly you are likely to be inspired to follow his new found courage on self-belief
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  10. 9.0 |   musicOMH

    KIWANUKA doesn’t waste a single one of its 51 minutes, and seems destined to receive the same sort of acclaim as its predecessor
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  11. 9.0 |   Clash

    Michael Kiwanuka has undoubtedly created a timeless album, one made with impressive confidence
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  12. 9.0 |   The Quietus

    It’s very easy for a reviewer to play armchair warrior and forward claims for all sorts of nonsense for music they like. But this is a glorious, heart-stopping, essential album. You’d have to have a heart of stone not to be moved by it
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  13. 8.5 |   Paste Magazine

    It’s a testament to perseverance, determination and a vivid creative imagination from an artist who seems to have finally found himself, and that’s profound enough
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  14. 8.0 |   PopMatters

    Soulful British folk rocker Michael Kiwanuka brings listeners along for an evocative sonic journey on his new album, Kiwanuku
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  15. 8.0 |   All Music

    As fine as Love & Hate was - worthy of all its accolades - Kiwanuka stands head and shoulders above it as a complex, communicative, poetic, and sometimes even profound collection that wears its heart on its sleeve and its sophistication in its grooves
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  16. 8.0 |   The Irish Times

    It’s fitting that this collection is eponymously titled; with these songs Kiwanuka self-assuredly shrugs off the myriad comparisons, embraces his style and completely owns it
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  17. 8.0 |   American Songwriter

    This isn’t as immediately powerful or riveting as Love & Hate. But the multifaceted material, along with the pioneering, organic and often offbeat production, grows on you. Listening closely with headphones heightens and intensifies the experience
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  18. 8.0 |   Mojo

    An album that's thoughtful, emotional, expertly crafted and often sublime. Print edition only

  19. 8.0 |   The Arts Desk

    Featuring harps and children’s choirs, Kiwanuka could have gone off the rails, but it has the songs and the focused intent to convince
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  20. 8.0 |   The FT

    The Afrobeat theme disappears, but chunky bass and unprocessed guitars have the gritty sound of classic rock ‘n’ soul
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  21. 8.0 |   The Independent

    Defiant self-titled third album smudges the personal and political
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  22. 8.0 |   The Music

    Kiwanuka makes old school soul music for modern audiences and has once again crafted a personal album oozing with '60s rock and soul
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  23. 7.5 |   Pitchfork

    Feels like an easy listen at first, but eventually reveals its mournful and even despairing heart
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  24. 7.5 |   Under The Radar

    Even for fans of his debut, the soft-spoken, acoustic Home Again, Kiwinuka's latest features some of the DNA of that record as well—albeit in light of his new-found electric, sharper side
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  25. 7.5 |   Spectrum Culture

    What it lacks in immediacy, Kiwanuka more than makes up for in sheer declarative artistry
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  26. 7.0 |   Rolling Stone

    At his best, Kiwanuka foregrounds the dizzying breadth of his influences, refusing, at all costs, to play for cheap soul thrills
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  27. 6.0 |   The Observer

    The only downside is that Kiwanuka could have been even braver
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