Usher is enjoying quite the resurgence. From his recent sold-out Las Vegas residency to his upcoming Super Bowl LVIII Halftime Show performance that’s sure to be the talk of the town – not to mention his just-announced multi-city USHER: PAST PRESENT FUTURE Tour set to kick off this summer. He’s also been teasing us with a litany of singles for the past year while hinting that something more was just around the corner. Now the crooner is rightfully capitalizing on his big moment by finally releasing his anticipated new project COMING HOME, his first new album since he dropped 2018’s collaborative effort A.
The 20-song set is sprawling, with Ursh tapping into several different styles and inviting more than a few collaborators along the way. Some of the set’s best moments come from these big swings, including previously released singles “Risk It All,” “Ruin” and “Good Good.” Surprisingly enough, though, there are no real club bangers on the level of a “Yeah” or “U Don’t Have To Call” to be found on the set — only the Billy Joel-sampling “A-Town Girl” featuring Latto, “Keep On Dancin’” and “Stone Kold Freak” even come close to breaking past mid-tempo territory.
Despite that fact, Usher does find his pocket in the project’s latter half. There is where he wears his many influences on his sleeve. Of course, we get a dose of the trap-happy R&B production that you’d expect from someone who reps for ATL as hard as Usher does. But we also find songs like the trifecta of “I Love U,” “Please U” and “Luckiest Man,” which borrow from a few different ’80s aesthetics as the singer puts on the loverman persona that the world has come to know and love. He also satisfies his fans’ ’90s and 2000s R&B cravings on songs such as “On The Side,” “I Am The Party” and “One Of Them Ones.”
This album doesn’t necessarily have the jam-packed allure of a Confessions or 8701. Still, it’s nice to know that, 30 years into his career, Usher still has the ability to craft a musical moment like COMING HOME that’s sure to get us all talking.