Music » Music Stories

George Michael

Patience (Aegean/Epic)

by

comment
Patience is George Michael's best album since the mega-selling Faith made him a superstar in the late 1980s. Alternating uptempo tracks (like "Amazing," the memorably hooked leadoff single) with more contemplative numbers, it showcases a candid, thoughtful artist who no longer hides from his homosexuality. Eight years since his last album, six years since the arrest for lewd conduct that outed him, Michael is crafting some of the best music of his career.

Despite its glossiness, Patience feels authentic and heartfelt. Michael's supple, bluesy voice, which made tunes such as "Careless Whisper" and "Father Figure" so haunting, is flexible enough to animate tunes as disparate as the ballad "American Angel" (about his lover), the urgent, revelatory "Round Here" and "Freeek! '04," a techno pumper with a harsh, weary worldview. Michael isn't pulling punches here; beneath the highly refined production and the startlingly contemporary beats is a dual -- but not contradictory -- message: Dance to the world, but take it seriously too. Far more than a comeback, this album affirms Michael's complexity with variety, assurance and an unerring sense of pop form. Patience was well worth waiting for.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.