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Solange|A Seat At The Table

A Seat At The Table

Solange

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Solange Knowles started writing her third album in New Iberia, Louisiana, a town where her maternal grandparents lived until a Molotov cocktail was thrown into their home. That setting helps explain how A Seat at the Table turned out drastically different from Knowles' previous output. There's no revisitation of beachy retro soul-pop and new wave akin to "Sandcastle Disco" or "Losing You." Nothing has the humor of "Some Things Never Seem to Fucking Work" or the bluntness of "Fuck the Industry." There certainly aren't any love songs in the traditional sense. Instead, surrounded by a collaborative throng that includes Raphael Saadiq, Dave Longstreth, and Adam Bainbridge, Knowles composed and produced alleviating pro-black reflections of frustration and anger. They regard persistent dehumanizing burdens dealt to her and other persons of color in a country where many are hostile to the phrase "Black Lives Matter" and the equality-seeking organization of the same name. Remarkably, tender elegance is the mode for much of the album's duration, as heard in the exquisitely unguarded "Cranes in the Sky" and dimly lit left-of-center pop-R&B hybrids "Don't You Wait" and "Don't Wish Me Well." Those songs crave release and reject character assassination and stasis while hinting at inevitable fallout. Their restrained ornamentation and moderate tempos are perfectly suited for Knowles, an undervalued vocalist who never aims to bring the house down yet fills each note with purposeful emotion. When the rhythms bounce and the melodies brighten, as they do during a short second-half stretch, the material remains rooted in profound grief and mystified irritation. In "Borderline," a chugging machine beat and a lilting piano line form the backdrop of a scene where Knowles and her partner tune out the world for the sake of their sanity. Then, after Nia Andrews and Kelly Rowland's half minute of proud harmonic affirmation, along comes "Junie," a squiggling jam on which André 3000 makes like the track's namesake (Ohio Players and Parliament legend Junie Morrison), where Knowles delivers a sharp metaphorical smackdown of a cultural interloper like it's merely an improvised postscript. All of the guests, from Lil Wayne to Kelela, make necessary appearances. The same goes for Knowles' parents and Master P, who are present in the form of short interludes in which they discuss segregation, self-reliance, cultural theft, and black pride. These segues shrewdly fasten a cathartic yet poised album, one that weighs a ton and levitates.
© Andy Kellman /TiVo

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A Seat At The Table

Solange

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1
Rise
00:01:41

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Raphael Saadiq, Bass, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Ahmir Thompson, Composer, Lyricist - Dylan Wiggins, Synthesizer - Patrick Wimberly, Synthesizer - Raymond Angry, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Devon Welsh, Composer, Lyricist - Questlove, Producer - Majical Cloudz, Producer - Matthew Otto, Composer, Lyricist - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

2
Weary
00:03:14

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Tweet - Raphael Saadiq, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Dylan Wiggins, Composer, Lyricist - Sir Dylan, Producer - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

3
Interlude: The Glory is in You
00:00:17

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Spoken Word, Composer, Lyricist - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Solange Knowles, Executive Producer, Producer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer, Producer - Sir Dylan, Producer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

4
Cranes in the Sky
00:04:10

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - John Kirby, Synthesizer - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

5
Interlude: Dad Was Mad
00:00:46

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Spoken Word, Composer, Lyricist - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Solange Knowles, Executive Producer, Producer - Dave Longstreth, Producer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer, Producer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Sir Dylan, Producer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

6
Mad Explicit
00:03:55

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Lil Wayne, Associated Performer, Featured Artist - Solange feat. Lil Wayne, Associated Performer - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - The-Dream - David Longstreth, Composer, Lyricist - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Dave Longstreth, Producer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Sir Dylan, Producer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Dwayne Carter, Composer, Lyricist - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Dylan Wiggins, Composer, Lyricist - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

7
Don't You Wait
00:04:05

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Olugbenga, Bass, Producer - Olugbenga adelekan, Composer, Lyricist - Patrick Wimberly, Bass - Troy Johnson, Bass, Composer, Lyricist, Recording Engineer - Adam Bainbridge, Composer, Guitar, Lyricist - David Longstreth, Composer, Guitar, Lyricist - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Dave Longstreth, Producer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Sampha Sisay, Composer, Lyricist - Sampha, Producer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Kwes, Producer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Sey Kwesi, Composer, Lyricist - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

8
Interlude: Tina Taught Me
00:01:14

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Spoken Word, Composer, Lyricist - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Sampha, Producer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Solange Knowles, Executive Producer, Producer - Dave Andrew Sitek, Producer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Patrick Wimberly, Producer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Bryndon Cook, Producer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

9
Don't Touch My Hair Explicit
00:04:17

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Sampha, Associated Performer, Featured Artist, Producer - Solange feat. Sampha, Associated Performer - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Raphael Saadiq, Bass, Executive Producer - Bryndon Cook, Bass, Bells, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Sampha Sisay, Composer, Lyricist - Dave Sitek, Composer, Lyricist - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Dave Andrew Sitek, Producer - Patrick Wimberly, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

10
Interlude: This Moment
00:00:49

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Spoken Word, Composer, Lyricist - Adam Bainbridge, Producer - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Solange Knowles, Executive Producer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

11
Where Do We Go
00:04:24

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Sean Nicholas Savage, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Patrick Wimberly, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Kwes, Producer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Sey Kwesi, Composer, Lyricist - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Dylan Wiggins, Composer, Lyricist - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

12
Interlude: For Us By Us
00:00:52

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Spoken Word, Composer, Lyricist - John Kirby, Producer - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Solange Knowles, Executive Producer, Producer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

13
F.U.B.U. Explicit
00:05:13

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - The-Dream, Associated Performer, Featured Artist - BJ The Chicago Kid, Associated Performer, Featured Artist - Solange feat. The Dream and BJ The Chicago Kid, Associated Performer - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Tweet - Rostam Batmanglij, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Terius Nash, Composer, Lyricist - Dave Longstreth, Producer - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - David Longstreth, Composer, Lyricist - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

14
Borderline (An Ode to Self Care)
00:03:02

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Q-Tip, Associated Performer, Drums, Featured Artist, Keyboards, Producer - Solange feat. Q-Tip, Associated Performer - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Kamaal Fareed, Composer, Lyricist - Chris Sholar, Guitar - Casey Benjamin, Keyboards - Timothy Mosley, Composer, Lyricist - Josh David, Bass - Raphael Saadiq, Bass, Executive Producer - Stephen Garrett, Composer, Lyricist - John Kirby, Piano - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

15
Interlude: I Got So Much Magic, You Can Have It
00:00:26

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Kelly Rowland, Associated Performer, Featured Artist - Nia Andrews, Associated Performer, Featured Artist - Solange feat. Kelly Rowland and Nia Andrews, Associated Performer - Spoken Word, Composer, Lyricist - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Solange Knowles, Executive Producer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

16
Junie
00:03:06

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist, Producer - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist - John Kirby, Composer, Lyricist, Piano, Producer - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - André Benjamin, Composer, Lyricist - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

17
Interlude: No Limits
00:00:39

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist, Producer - Spoken Word, Composer, Lyricist - John Kirby, Producer - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Solange Knowles, Executive Producer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

18
Don't Wish Me Well
00:04:15

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Sampha, Producer - Sampha Sisay, Composer, Lyricist - David Longstreth, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Kwes, Producer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Adam Bainbridge, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Sey Kwesi, Composer, Lyricist - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

19
Interlude: Pedestals
00:00:57

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist, Producer - Spoken Word, Composer, Lyricist - Solange Knowles, Executive Producer, Piano - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

20
Scales
00:03:39

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Kelela, Associated Performer, Featured Artist - Solange feat. Kelela, Associated Performer - Solange Knowles, Composer, Executive Producer, Lyricist, Producer - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - David Longstreth, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Kwes, Producer - Troy Johnson, Recording Engineer - Sey Kwesi, Composer, Lyricist - Patrick Wimberly, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson, Producer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

21
Closing: The Chosen Ones
00:00:42

Solange, Associated Performer, Main Artist, Producer - Spoken Word, Composer, Lyricist - Dontae Williams, Horn - Kevin Williams, Horn - Leon Silva, Horn - Mikaelin "Blue" BlueSpruce, Mixing Engineer, Recording Engineer - Nino Villanuova, Recording Engineer - Troy Johnson, Producer, Recording Engineer - Steve Rusch, Recording Engineer - Bobby Campbell, Recording Engineer - Hotay Alexander Jan, Recording Engineer - Victor Wainstein, Recording Engineer - Ken Oriole, Recording Engineer - Jake Aron, Recording Engineer - Thayod Ausar, Recording Engineer - Blair Wells, Recording Engineer - Gloria Kaba, Recording Engineer - Solange Knowles, Executive Producer - Raphael Saadiq, Executive Producer - Troy "R8DIO" Johnson - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer - Kevin Peterson, Assistant Producer

(P) 2016 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

Descripción del álbum

Solange Knowles started writing her third album in New Iberia, Louisiana, a town where her maternal grandparents lived until a Molotov cocktail was thrown into their home. That setting helps explain how A Seat at the Table turned out drastically different from Knowles' previous output. There's no revisitation of beachy retro soul-pop and new wave akin to "Sandcastle Disco" or "Losing You." Nothing has the humor of "Some Things Never Seem to Fucking Work" or the bluntness of "Fuck the Industry." There certainly aren't any love songs in the traditional sense. Instead, surrounded by a collaborative throng that includes Raphael Saadiq, Dave Longstreth, and Adam Bainbridge, Knowles composed and produced alleviating pro-black reflections of frustration and anger. They regard persistent dehumanizing burdens dealt to her and other persons of color in a country where many are hostile to the phrase "Black Lives Matter" and the equality-seeking organization of the same name. Remarkably, tender elegance is the mode for much of the album's duration, as heard in the exquisitely unguarded "Cranes in the Sky" and dimly lit left-of-center pop-R&B hybrids "Don't You Wait" and "Don't Wish Me Well." Those songs crave release and reject character assassination and stasis while hinting at inevitable fallout. Their restrained ornamentation and moderate tempos are perfectly suited for Knowles, an undervalued vocalist who never aims to bring the house down yet fills each note with purposeful emotion. When the rhythms bounce and the melodies brighten, as they do during a short second-half stretch, the material remains rooted in profound grief and mystified irritation. In "Borderline," a chugging machine beat and a lilting piano line form the backdrop of a scene where Knowles and her partner tune out the world for the sake of their sanity. Then, after Nia Andrews and Kelly Rowland's half minute of proud harmonic affirmation, along comes "Junie," a squiggling jam on which André 3000 makes like the track's namesake (Ohio Players and Parliament legend Junie Morrison), where Knowles delivers a sharp metaphorical smackdown of a cultural interloper like it's merely an improvised postscript. All of the guests, from Lil Wayne to Kelela, make necessary appearances. The same goes for Knowles' parents and Master P, who are present in the form of short interludes in which they discuss segregation, self-reliance, cultural theft, and black pride. These segues shrewdly fasten a cathartic yet poised album, one that weighs a ton and levitates.
© Andy Kellman /TiVo

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