D'Angelo - Voodoo LP

(Virgin/Cheeba Sound, 2000 - Modern Classics Recordings, 2012)

β€œVoodoo arrived five years behind D's home-recorded bap&B debut, Brown Sugar, and blew through its fair share of release dates before touching down on January 25, 2000. Its arrival came during the twilight of the mega-CD era-- six months after Napster's birth, two years before the iPod-- but its four-year gestation occurred during the halcyon 90s, a time when artists were afforded the chance to tinker for years on end while blazing through bottomless studio budgets. The record topped the Billboard albums chart during its first two weeks out, and looking at 2000's other #1s-- including N'Sync's record-breaking No Strings Attached, Eminem's angsty Marshall Mathers LP, and, uh, Limp Bizkit's Chocolate Starfish and the Hot Dog Flavored Water-- Voodoo stands tall with October's Kid A as a paranoid, mysterious, and challenging artistic statement that somehow managed to scale the industry… to understand who [D’Angelo] looked to for musical and spiritual guidance: Jimi Hendrix, Sly Stone, George Clinton, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Curtis Mayfield, Al Green, Otis Redding, Prince-- supremely gifted artists known for expertly plying their craft. His devotion isn't merely cosmetic or fashionable, though-- by all accounts he's a hardcore music nerd who "knows every Prince concert's playlist," according to recent GQ profiler Amy Wallace. His love of musical lore is partly why he chose to make Voodoo in Electric Lady Studios, the downtown Manhattan recording space Hendrix built in 1969. Listening to the album, his influences are apparent, but also ingrained in a way that's equal parts reverent and uncanny. Rather than just listening to old Funkadelic or Stevie albums for inspiration, Voodoo was literally born from them.” - Ryan Dombal for Pitchfork