The latest album of the soul and R&B artist Rag’n’Bone Man mirrors life’s bittersweet, a soundtrack of a man’s misadventures that sketch life in broad lines.
In his tweet on release day, the British singer said this album was an unfiltered reflection of his life so far, ready to be shared with fellow humans to listen and relate to the songs in their own unique ways.
This album tells that sour-sweet moment at the end of a party when sleepy and tipsy people are on an emotional search for memories. Those moments that make the night unforgettable, closing the dances and the hypes, that intimate scenes with the last ones left. This is what Life By Misadventure is made for, turning moments into an extraordinary snapshot to be shared with friends.
The sweet opening song takes us back in time, offering a nostalgic feeling of recording studios and analogical technology. The melody flows with ease following the warm and intense voice, and after a few verses, we find ourselves singing, “But don’t let fear be a thorn in your side / Keep your eyes on the light / And let everyone know that you’re caught in / Like fireflies in the garden.”
So smooth as almost invisible is the shift towards ‘Breathe in Me,’ an anthem of trust and love for someone strong and perseverant, far as to say, “I’ll live or die happily / just to know you’re free.”
‘Fall in Love Again,’ with the constant beating undertone feels like a run, the hype rises gradually until the refrain; ‘Talking to Myself’ is a tale of the need for something and someone, where the melody becomes the only way out.
‘Anywhere Away From Here’ featuring P!nk is the adult phase of the album’s story. The sweet piano melody enhances the singers’ intertwined voices, almost as a mental conversation explicating the fear of growing old and the omnipresent overthinking, a close exchange with oneself.
‘Alone’ is a soul-melting snapshot of the insecurities of a man having to trade-off independence and loneliness when the people around have already “significant others” and have started building their own lives with families and kids. ‘Crossfire’ is running, fast-paced, as the title suggests.
‘All You Ever Wanted’ is the real hit, with already more than five million views on YouTube, already a top song, whose incessant rhythm and catchy refrain capture both fans and occasional listeners.
‘Changing of the Guard’ gives the comfort of a familiar melody, following to ‘Somewhere Along The Way’ and its spoken intro, that touch of realness leading up to the most vibe-setting song: ‘Time Will Only Tell.’ A sweet, seamless voice, creating vivid and colourful mental images that seem within arm’s reach.
‘Lightyears’ is an ode to life, a call to live to the fullest, without being held back by mistakes but learning from them. “Wear your mistakes like an armour,” the singer says, “Start to living life in the moment / Your eyes are barely open then it’s gone”: hurry up, the world is out there waiting, do not worry about what might go wrong, it is all part of the journey.
‘Party’s Over’ follows the lead of previous songs by offering a perfect mix of rapid pace and gloomy melodies. The soul voice gently moves to the last track of the album, ‘Old Habits’ that closes the picture, framing a circular composition, a coming-of-age soundtrack, the man’s heart on his sleeve singing free to everyone.
Released on May 7 2021, Rag’n’Bone Man’s Life By Misadventure is available online across all streaming platforms.