Norman Brown Let It Go Album Review

Norman Brown Let It Go ReviewI just want to go back to the year 1994 for a minute.  My musical tastes had broadened, and I was looking for different sounds and styles to quench my musical thirst.  There were two artists in particular that did this for me.  One, was the Brand New Heavies.  They had a UK Funk thing going on, and I had to grab everything that they did up to that point.

The other was Norman Brown.  I heard his version of That’s The Way Love Goes on the radio, and I just loved the flow of the song.  Soon thereafter, I picked up the album, After The Storm, and I was immediately into every track.  I mean, it had everything you could want.  Smooth grooves like Take Me There, an uptempo jam such as Lydian, remakes like the superb Any Love, and by the way, a slow jam with vocals such as It Costs To Love.  For me, those aren’t even the best tracks on the album.  Let’s Come Together is THE track.

There are a lot of great artists in Smooth Jazz, but Mr. Brown is my favorite.

Finally, after five years, Norman Brown has released a new solo album.  It is called Let It Go, and it releases on April 14th.

Does it have the successful formula that we have come to expect from a Norman Brown album?  Let’s see.

Norman Brown Let It Go Album Review

The album opens with a short intro, called Lessons Of The Spirit.  For me, it just eases you into the journey to which you will embark.

As we move into It Keeps Coming Back, we hear the familiar guitar riffs that have made Brown a fan favorite.  Be sure to listen for the keyboard parts.  They are subtle, but they definitely are important to the vibe of the song.

Let It Go, the title track is up next, and while it is a smoothed out track, the beginning is almost like a long interlude.  About two minutes in, that guitar pace picks up a little.  For me, this is his signature.  The uptempo guitar playing over slower grooves.  If anyone does that better, I cannot name them.

If you want a rework of a classic, Ooh Child is here for you.  Joining Brown on vocals is TrayCar, and if you need a new song to get some inspiration to start your day, this is a good candidate.  By the way, I like the new background vocal arrangement about halfway through.  TrayCar also appears in several other tracks on the album.

In Conversations, Brown is joined by the group S.O.U.L. Members of the group just happen to be his daughters.  There is a great male/female dynamic on the background vocals.  The uptempo track on the album is up next with Living Out Your Destiny.  S.O.U.L. is featured once again, and there’s nothing wrong with a little funk, halfway through the album.

Do you need a duet?  Well, Chante Moore lends her talents to the track.  If you are familiar with my website, you know I am always talking about the absence of real R&B slow jams.  Holding You definitely fills that void.

We pick up the pace once again with The North Star.  Saxman Marion Meadows is featured, and they play off of each other quite nicely.  This is one of those tracks that I would love to hear “live.”

Brown will always give us a vocal track to showcase those George Benson influences. Very Woman is that track.  It has that slow, funk vibe that we love so much.

On Liberated, the band is back together.  When I say band, I mean BWB.  Rick Braun and Kirk Whalum join the project.  This track is one of the highlights of the album.  What can I say, the musicianship is tight, and also the vocals leave you wanting more than just the hook.  About halfway through they break it down with a Latin groove…but they bring it back to the original feeling.  Well played!

Remember Who You Are is up next, and Kirk Whalum is also featured here. The track is more of a Nu Jazz style, but the guitar works nicely over that type of groove.  This is definitely a cocktail party song.

We conclude with a classic written by Glen Ballard and Siedah Garrett.  Man In The Mirror is one of those songs that will give you inspiration, and this version is no different.  It features the Sounds of Blackness.  If you are not going to have a Church Choir on your record, I would say the Sounds of Blackness will definitely work!  This is the perfect track to close out the album, and Brown’s guitar ad libs are on full display.

Remember…..Make that change!

If you are a Norman Brown fan, this collection will not disappoint.  If you are not a fan….well….Go listen to After The Storm, or any of his other albums.  You will see the light!


Order Norman Brown Let It Go


10 Replies to "Norman Brown Let It Go Album Review"

  • comment-avatar
    Mandy April 24, 2017 (11:54 pm)

    I agree with all that you said. This is a CD that will never die. Thanks for the review.

    • comment-avatar
      ExoticDJ April 27, 2017 (9:48 am)

      For me, one of the best out there!

  • comment-avatar
    Gmoney Dollar September 14, 2017 (10:56 am)

    I Love It! Norman never disappoints!

    • comment-avatar
      ExoticDJ September 15, 2017 (12:39 pm)

      Probably the smoothest guitar player out there!

      • comment-avatar
        Gmoney Dollar September 15, 2017 (12:53 pm)

        Yes sir

  • comment-avatar
    Karen S. November 16, 2017 (9:34 am)

    Norman has been my favorite since 1994 and he is still my favorite. He always delivers amazing music.

    • comment-avatar
      ExoticDJ November 16, 2017 (10:47 am)

      That was the year After The Storm Came out. For me, that is still his best album.

  • comment-avatar
    VicJohnson December 26, 2017 (3:32 am)

    Taking into account the fact that you have just been speaking about his second album released in 1994, I guess there’s a mistake here:
    “Finally, after FIVE YEARS, Norman Brown has released a new solo album. It is called Let It Go, and it releases on April 14th.”
    “Let It Go” was released after 23 years…
    As for “FIVE YEARS”, you must mean his previous album called “24/7”, but it is not mentioned before the sentence. So, there’s a logical mistake here.
    Anyway, God bless you.
    The album is great. ☺️

    • comment-avatar
      ExoticDJ December 28, 2017 (9:03 am)

      I did not state that Let It Go was his second album, I merely said that he released a new album after five years. You are right though, the album IS great!

  • comment-avatar
    Ade December 26, 2017 (1:28 pm)

    Norman Brown has made several brilliant albums. However my all time favorite, simply because of the number of 5 star tracks on it, is “Celebration” from 1999. What an album!. I have all of his albums and will be getting this one too. Listening to his music has made my life a whole lot sweeter.

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