Review: Bryson Tiller returns to his roots on his third album, A N N I V E R S A R Y

Bryson Tiller Twitter | Photo Courtesy
The release marks nearly four years since the release of his sophomore effort

After veering off course with True To Self, fans are more than satisfied with the artist’s original sound

When singer Bryson Tiller first released his classic debut album, T R A P S O U L, over five years ago, he was the last person in the music industry with the intent of becoming an R&B superstar. It was an album filled with heartbreak, sadness and melancholy. Back then, there weren’t nearly as many singers with his range and “sound” being relatively new.

The only other big names at the time were artists such as Drake and The Weeknd as they rose to new peaks of their respective careers. However, as the industry became increasingly packed with misunderstood, melancholic singers (6LACK, PARTYNEXTDOOR, Pink Sweat$), Tiller kept quiet in the shadows as he took his time with his mysterious new project. Many worried that Tiller would fade away as so many other aspiring singers sadly have, but he had no shortage of confidence in himself.

As a former Papa John’s employee who was simply trying to make ends meet for his family at the time of recording his debut, he simply saw the music as an opportunity to make some extra money and have some fun. Now over five years, two albums and millions of fans later, Tiller is back with his third studio LP, A N N I V E R S A R Y.

Despite having plenty to comment on from the past four years since his last full project, the artist keeps his time brief. Clocking in at a mere 30 minutes over 10 full songs, the artist focuses on what his fans missed the most from him – His late-night crooning about love and heartbreak while managing to ride a fine line between R&B and Hip-Hop.

Even with a sole feature from superstar artist Drake, Tiller keeps the spotlight focused on himself for the majority of the album, and his fanbase wouldn’t have wanted any different. Top tracks from the album include the opener, “Years Go By”, as well as the album’s glorious finale, “Next To You.”

Both are almost too reminiscent of his debut album that his core fans love and cherish, as the instrumental, sound and lyrics sound as if they’re songs that are straight from the recording sessions nearly six years ago.

While the world had quite the wait for new music from Tiller, it seems that we may not have to wait nearly as long this time around. Tiller has been teasing an album titled Serenity for the last year or more. When posed with a question on Twitter regarding its fate with the impending arrival of A N N I VE R S A R Y, Tiller simply stated “Winter.” That being said, his fanbase could potentially be getting more music much sooner than they would have expected from him.

Tiller’s new album sounds as if it was created to be a soundtrack to late nights. While releases from him don’t come by nearly as often as much of his fanbase would love for them to, his efforts are only appreciated that much more when he does release a project. While there’s a chance that we won’t have to be waiting nearly as long for his fourth LP, we’ll be eager for any new music he blesses us with.

Review: 4/5

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