Hearing a Deeper Groove in Leon Bridges’ Good Thing

Think Christian | 6/12/2018 | Staff
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Bridges’ latest may sound like sex, but it’s equally concerned with the soul.

The first single to drop from Leon Bridges’ hotly anticipated second album, Good Thing, was the acoustically driven, deeply soulful, and subtly countercultural love song, “Beyond.” Sitting somewhere between Van Morrison’s “Into the Mystic” and Al Green’s “Tired of Being Alone,” the track suggested a musical evolution that the rest of the LP certainly lives up to. Yet as enticing as the music on the track is, the lyrics are what truly set it apart, as “Beyond” dares to suggest that the best part of true love might not be between the sheets.

Bridges - Queries - Longing - Potential - Marriage

“Do you think I’m being foolish if I don’t rush in?” Bridges queries with soulful longing. He contemplates the deeper potential of lasting love: marriage, children, how grandma would have felt. He even considers the eternal implications of intimacy, suggesting that a casual hookup might undermine all of that. The song posits that the “good thing,” or maybe even the best thing, is often found somewhere beyond. The search for such deeper treasure pops up again and again throughout Good Thing.

Bridges stopped traffic with his shockingly good 2015 debut Coming Home. Featuring an unapologetically retro style, the album served as an excellent introduction to a young artist who was deeply connected to both his musical and spiritual roots. Instead of returning to the same formula on Good Thing, however, Bridges widens his musical palate and deepens his lyrical sophistication. In fact, the set’s main connection to anything “retro” is found mostly in its devotion to melody and real instruments. Generally speaking, Good Thing is far less self-consciously old school than Coming Home, a fact that likely bodes well for Bridges’ long-term viability as an artist.

Range - Thing - Soul

The sonic range on Good Thing is impressive indeed. While 1970s soul...
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