Apparently I finally found out what was needed for me to start liking James Blake’s debut: to be sick with a virus and spend a few days at home with not much to do. What was my problem with this album before? The fact that it all seemed too incomplete, like too much sketches and great ideas grouped together but with something still missing. And what changed in the last high-fever days? I suppose my availability and patience to fill in the gaps by myself.
So yes, I now agree: this will probably be considered a landmark in the future, when a dubstep musician started building up his own world and used some – but not much – of the scene’s elements to create a new and very personal sound. As a matter of fact, I don’t think there’s much dubstep in here anymore. This album is more a collection of leftfield songs, little melodies with a heavily processed voice – that anyway still sounds fragile enough, actually like everything else in here -, built around some really unique electronic sounds and… a lot of silence.
Yes it can sound incomplete in the beginning. But maybe there’s another expression for that, and that’s: entering someone’s intimacy. (8/10)