Review: Bobby Womack, ‘The Bravest’

Review: Bobby Womack, ‘The Bravest Man In the Universe’: Aidin Vaziri | Bobby Womack’s recent cancer scare was a good reminder to cherish the greats while they’re still walking among us. The 68-year-old soul singer’s first album of new material in almost two decades couldn’t arrive at a better time. Produced by Gorillaz mastermind Damon Albarn and XL label boss Richard Russell, who oversaw Gil Scott-Heron’s last release, “I’m New Here,” it’s a fittingly regal comeback for a man who played with James Brown and Elvis Presley and co-wrote the Rolling Stones’ hit “It’s All Over Now.” Womack’s raspy, weathered vocals – he’s on the other side of a 30-year cocaine addiction – work surprisingly well over a thoroughly modern score made up of mournful pianos, strings and drum machines. There’s a gorgeous duet with Lana Del Rey called “Dayglo Reflection,” while the track “Please Forgive My Heart” ranks as one of Womack’s finest moments. That’s no small feat when you’re talking about the man who sang the theme to “Across 110th Street.”

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