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Album Review: Angel's Pulse by Blood Orange

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Blood Orange, or Dev Hynes, is a British singer and songwriter who just released a new mixtape, Angel's Pulse. This mixtape is supposed to be a sequel, or epilogue, to his 2018 album Negro Swan. While his 2018 album was the first time I listened to his music, I wasn't blown away by it, but I enjoyed it. This mixtape is made up of several different short tracks, which makes it easier for listeners to stay focused throughout the mixtape.

The first track is I Wanna C U. It's a short track that is just barely over a minute long. The track has a very distinct, twangy guitar sound that is going to be used throughout the album. The second track, Something To Do, has the same guitar, with a little more reverb this time. There's a random guitar solo towards the beginning of the song, but it is a short track that is less than a minute long.

Dark & Handsome is the first full-length track off of the mixtape. This track has a fun feature from Toro y Moi, who actually released an album earlier this year. This track is filled with sadness, as he's realized that nothing lasts forever, which could reference a breakup or even a friend passing away. In the first verse, he mentions his friends that passed away in 2018, Sam Mehran and Mac Miller.

Benzo is probably my favorite track from the first half of the mixtape. This is a great track that has a soulful feeling to it, especially when you have a group of people singing during the chorus. According to the artist, this track is about other's not realizing your worth. However, it is also a lack of self-worth, so the person has to put aside his ego.

The next track, Birmingham, uses an excerpt from a poem by Dudley Randall. The song and poem talk about the church bombing in the 1960s. It is definitely a change of pace compared to the last track, but it does a great job portraying the tragedy, and how the mother felt when she lost her child to the attack.

Good For You is one of the two tracks that feature the phenomenal singer, Justine Skye. Just like most of the other tracks, it features the beautiful guitar. Blood Orange also distorts some of his vocals during the chorus.

Baby Florence (Figure) is the next track off the mixtape. It starts off with an energetic beat, but cuts out for a little bit and slows back down before Blood Orange comes in with his vocals. This is one of the few songs that he recorded when he was in Florence.

Gold Teeth is the introduction to the last half of the mixtape, which I enjoy much more than the first half. This is more hip-hop heavy compared to the other tracks on here, but it also features one of the past members from Three 6 Mafia, Gangsta Boo. It's comparable to the original gangster rap of the 90s and early 2000s, but with a light piano beat in the background.

Berlin has a chill, laid back vibe to it. The guitar is playing so softly, but so entrancing when you listen to it. Blood Orange said he wrote this after a late night concert in Berlin, but had his friend Porches do a verse over the track. My only complaint is that this song is too short since it is just under two minutes.

After that, we have Tuesday Feeling (Choose To Stay). What I am getting from the song, this person is in this relationship that isn't good for them. They choose to ignore the bad signs, and they stay with this person.

Seven Hours Part I starts off with a 90s-like hip hop beat. This entire track features the underground rapper and producer, BennY RevivaL. Blood Orange met BennY RevivaL through a friend, and this is actually BennY RevivaL's first feature on a track.

Take It Back is another favorite of mine from this mixtape, mostly because it features a Brockhampton member, Joba. This is just another laid back beat added to the mixtape, and it is actually the longest track on here.

The next track we have is Happiness. According to Blood Orange, the lyrics in this song aren't supposed to be sad or depressing. He said that once you realize some things in life don't matter, it frees you. Then you can start focusing on the things that mean something to you.

The last track is Today and I love the synth at the very beginning, just because it gives us something different compared to the rest of the mixtape. This track talks about how he made a mistake by going outside, or leaving the house since nothing good is happening today. That could reference all of the problems in the country or the world.

What did you think of this mixtape? What were some of your favorite tracks? Let me know down in the comments section!
Overall Rating: 7/10
Favorite Tracks: Benzo, Gold Teeth, Berlin, Take It Back

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