The Element of Freedom
With her solid fourth studio album, Keys sets another gold standard for soul. Raw, emotional, and soaring, this renowned US songwriter draws from a recent loss of a family member to deliver a work of remarkable strength and vulnerability. Keys casts a spell with her backbone of downtempo, naked piano ballads and then spikes them with bright, punchy dance tracks. The real beauty, however, is when she pulls away from her noisy collaboration with Jay-Z to lay down an elegant ode to New York City. This nostalgic rendition would make anyone want to head to the Big Apple, even if you’ve recently fled it.