REVIEW: James Blake - Assume Form

James Blake (Photo: Getty)
James Blake (Photo: Getty)

Cape Town - British singer and songwriter James Blake is one of the most talented musicians in the world right now. His smooth and effortlessly soothing syrup-like vocals have been used on albums from a wide variety of artists such as Trim, Beyoncé and Chance The Rapper. 

You might have heard his breakout 2013 hit, Retrograde without knowing it because it has been featured on a slew of series such as The Blacklist, The Leftovers and Silent Witness. But with his latest album, Assume Form, he steps into the spotlight once more as a powerful and unique innovator in his own right. 

On this fresh and fearless album James collaborates with chart runners Metro Boomin’ and Travis Scott as well as well respected rap veteran, Andre 3000 but I have to say my favourite joint venture on the record is with Spanish artist Rosalía on the song Barefoot In The Park.

The slow tempo song captures the sadness and pleasure of being in love with a melody that is so easy to singalong with you might not even realise you are doing it. 


That sun-soaked track is indicative of an album that ebbs and flows between the beauty and tragedy of life in a way that feels like an interlinked dream with different episodes. Each song flows into the next like a slowly building fantasy world that reflects modern life in an amazing way that is almost beyond words. 

I feel that Assume Form is the natural progression of James’ collaborations and standalone albums; so, listeners should not expect it to be a complete departure from his previous work but rather a leap in the same direction. There is a reason that other platforms such as The Guardian and NME have raved about this record.

It showcases some of James’ best work and definitely sets a very, very high benchmark for everyone else coming out with albums in 2019. Stream it and buy it today, it is worth much more than the cost of subscription. 

Rating: 5/5