12 Songs, 51 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

The fact that it's often identified as Seal’s darkest and moodiest album has obscured the lushness of 1998’s Human Being. Though it doesn’t have a breakout single on par with “Crazy” or “Kiss from a Rose,” it has the richest sound of any Seal album. “Human Beings,” “Latest Craze," and “Excerpt From” combine the qualities that defined Seal's earlier hits: specifically, the sweeping melodrama of “Kiss from a Rose” and the silken techno of “Crazy.” Those traits notwithstanding, Human Being also takes cues from rock. “Lost My Faith,” “Still Love Remains," and “No Easy Way” make it clear that Seal had studied Radiohead’s The Bends and OK Computer. Meanwhile, “Colour” presents a version of trip-hop that's smoother and more liquidy than the cavernous melodies of Portishead and Massive Attack. For all its modernism, the best moments on Human Being nod to the past. “When a Man Is Wrong” has the simple and sweetly confessional nature of a John Lennon tune, while the extraordinary “State of Grace” comes off like a fusion of Al Green and vintage Pink Floyd.

EDITORS’ NOTES

The fact that it's often identified as Seal’s darkest and moodiest album has obscured the lushness of 1998’s Human Being. Though it doesn’t have a breakout single on par with “Crazy” or “Kiss from a Rose,” it has the richest sound of any Seal album. “Human Beings,” “Latest Craze," and “Excerpt From” combine the qualities that defined Seal's earlier hits: specifically, the sweeping melodrama of “Kiss from a Rose” and the silken techno of “Crazy.” Those traits notwithstanding, Human Being also takes cues from rock. “Lost My Faith,” “Still Love Remains," and “No Easy Way” make it clear that Seal had studied Radiohead’s The Bends and OK Computer. Meanwhile, “Colour” presents a version of trip-hop that's smoother and more liquidy than the cavernous melodies of Portishead and Massive Attack. For all its modernism, the best moments on Human Being nod to the past. “When a Man Is Wrong” has the simple and sweetly confessional nature of a John Lennon tune, while the extraordinary “State of Grace” comes off like a fusion of Al Green and vintage Pink Floyd.

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