Read as much as you want on, anywhere and anytime, for just 99¢.

CD Review | R&B

Miguel, ‘Kaleidoscope Dream’

After an inconsistent 2010 debut, the Southern California born R&B singer’s pop talent comes into focus on his second effort. These songs are propelled by guitar with electronic flourishes coloring the mix as the singer yearns, cajoles, and insinuates. Miguel, who also co-produces, needs to trust his own vocals more, as some tracks are simply overproduced. A good hook (“I’m going to do you like drugs”) on “Do You” gets washed away by effects, and a gratuitous gimmick (sampling “Time of the Season”) on “Don’t Look Back” fails to serve to the song. He’s at his best when he slips into his expressive falsetto, but Miguel frequently comes off too remote for a true soul singer. It sounds like he loves ya, but at arm’s length. Terrific pop instincts are on display, though, on “How Many Drinks?” and the funky, melodic “Where’s the Fun in Forever.” He still nods to Prince (“Candles in the Sun,”) but errs with a minimalist (primitive!) come-on, “[Expletive] Is Mine,” which sounds like an outtake. (Out Tuesday)

ESSENTIAL “Where’s the Fun in Forever”

Loading comments...
Subscriber Log In

You have reached the limit of 5 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of
Marketing image of