James Blake, The Colour in Anything

London Singer-songwriter James Blake releases his third album The Colour in Anything.

By Jane Howkins

The Colour In Anything is the third album from English singer-songwriter James Blake, officially released earlier this year in May. Blake has previously had some success with his first two albums, and his third effort should be no different. His self-titled début album was released in 2011 and his sophomore effort Overgrown was released two years later in 2013.

   Blake has garnered some well deserved attention over the years that he has been active (for example, Overgrown was awarded the Mercury Prize award in 2013), and his latest effort is no different, showing off the singer-songwriter’s talents to great effect. It’s important to note that Blake’s work is generally pretty hard to get into at first, but stick with it, and it will work wonders for your ears. It’s harsh, sometimes bleak and it isn’t for everyone, but if you can overcome that and give The Colour In Anything a try then you will be rewarded.

   The songs here are rather minimalistic, with Blake’s soulful voice mixing well with the instrumentation on display here. One particular stand-out track is Love Me In Whatever Way, which combines Blake’s vocals with soft piano chords and what sounds like an organ with a few other electronic effects. It’s an almost mournful sound that Blake has built up here but it works, and whilst not typically catchy, these songs will worm their way inside your head if you let them. Blake seems to be a lot more honest here as well. He’s always been the confessional type, but on The Colour In Anything he truly lets go, taking the listener into his dark and mysterious world.

   The only thing that really holds Blake back here is the fact that the album is a bit too long (there are seventeen tracks altogether), but fans of Blake will eat it up, and as the old adage goes – you can’t have too much of a good thing!