12 Songs

EDITORS’ NOTES

Tom Krell speaks in R&B, cloaked in the reassuring, unassuming wrappings of intimate indie pop. His voice is silky and limber and flows with ease and grace, like the best R&B singers—just without getting lost in the trappings of dance beats and saxophones. The Colorado artist has steadily refined his sound for his third album, “What Is This Heart?”. Krell’s cynical lyrics (“Tell me what love’s supposed to be,” "Who knows if I love you, baby?”), his regal synth washes (“Face Again” has a stupefying numbers of soundscapes for such a cohesive track), and the collection’s dark, hope-perforated tones (especially on “See You Fall”) are inarguably seductive. Disembodied vocals, fingersnaps, and plentiful reverb might offer no real surprises, but delivering those (masterfully used) alongside sweeps of orchestral grandeur (“Pour Cyril”) and commercial pop sensibilities (“Very Best Friend”) takes special vision. Influences as disparate as Prince, Michael Jackson, Tracy Chapman, and even Whitney Houston have never been treated like this.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Tom Krell speaks in R&B, cloaked in the reassuring, unassuming wrappings of intimate indie pop. His voice is silky and limber and flows with ease and grace, like the best R&B singers—just without getting lost in the trappings of dance beats and saxophones. The Colorado artist has steadily refined his sound for his third album, “What Is This Heart?”. Krell’s cynical lyrics (“Tell me what love’s supposed to be,” "Who knows if I love you, baby?”), his regal synth washes (“Face Again” has a stupefying numbers of soundscapes for such a cohesive track), and the collection’s dark, hope-perforated tones (especially on “See You Fall”) are inarguably seductive. Disembodied vocals, fingersnaps, and plentiful reverb might offer no real surprises, but delivering those (masterfully used) alongside sweeps of orchestral grandeur (“Pour Cyril”) and commercial pop sensibilities (“Very Best Friend”) takes special vision. Influences as disparate as Prince, Michael Jackson, Tracy Chapman, and even Whitney Houston have never been treated like this.

TITLE TIME
3:49
5:27
4:28
3:16
3:35
6:18
4:12
4:04
3:47
5:00
4:20
6:11

About How to Dress Well

As How to Dress Well, Tom Krell makes ghostly, affecting R&B. While he was living in Brooklyn, Krell performed live experimental music as How to Dress Well by looping layers of his voice, and he began recording under that name after moving to Berlin. He released the first How to Dress Well EP, The Eternal Love, in October 2009 as a free download via his blog, and more EPs followed through April 2010. Krell signed to Lefse Records, which released his first official single, Ready for the World, in July 2010; his acclaimed debut album, Love Remains, arrived that October. Two years later, Krell returned with Total Loss, a more cleanly recorded set of songs -- inspired by trying to be positive in the face of adversity -- that featured co-production by XL Records executive Rodaidh McDonald. McDonald and Krell teamed up again for 2014's ambitious What Is This Heart? Two years later, Krell took his music in a much poppier direction on Care, which featured production by Bleachers' Jack Antonoff, Dre Skull, Kara-Lis Coverdale, and CFCF. ~ Heather Phares

  • ORIGIN
    Germany

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