It’s been a few weeks since R&B artist Daniel Caesar dropped his debut album, Freudian. Since then, I’ve had time to fully digest this project in its entirety. As simple as I can put it, this album is GOLDEN!
The 22-year-old Toronto native is rising to the apex of his career. Though his success is taking him to higher heights, the journey to his current position did not happen overnight. Born Ashton Simmonds, he grew up in Oshawa – a small city in Ontario, Canada. Caesar was heavily involved in the church from playing instruments to singing in the choir. Constant battles led to him moving out on his high school graduation day and becoming homeless. Fast forward, Caesar linked up with a notable Canadian producer by the name of Jordan Evans which led to his 2014 project, Praise Break. Listeners were immediately attracted to his vintage vocals. In 2015, he released his second EP, Pilgrim’s Paradise.
Digressing into 2017, Freudian released on August 25. A 10-track album that is receiving mad positive feedback. I first heard Caesar back in 2014 when he released his Praise Break EP. “Violet” was on my “smooth” playlist. I didn’t really pay too much attention to his 2015 EP (for unknown reasons) – In hindsight, it is amazing as well. His rendition of Kanye’s “Street Lights” is pure perfection.
But let’s talk about Freudian. Can I just say, since its release I have not stopped listening to it? I have this unfamiliar mood while I’m indulging. I can’t really explain it. I feel lusty, emotional, heartbroken, and refreshed all at the same time. Freudian describes the most turbulent love you can ever think of (which is probably why I can relate to it). Not to say it’s all bad because no love ever starts off bad. It’s a critical kind of love that puts your love into perspective after it’s through. It changes you. It feels like a burning love, an irrational love, an intense love. Or lust? This album takes you through the highs and lows of what it feels like to be involved with a significant other. Freudian is raw, organic, and unfiltered.
Daniel Caesar is exactly what R&B has been craving. His sound is a melting pot of genres. Gospel, Soul, R&B, and folk all wrapped up into one. It’s what the game’s been missing. His octaves and rhythmic rounds on this album give you a nostalgic feel of the 90s. Freudian is nothing short of a masterpiece. All of his New York shows are all sold out but I HAVE to witness his voice live.
If you haven’t listened to Freudian yet, I’m not sure why you’re life isn’t together. Get your life in tact below:
Here’s a rundown of my favorite tracks and my brief take on them below:
Get You (feat. Kali Uchis)
I gravitated towards this track prior to the album coming out. I first heard it back in July and it immediately sparked my taste level.
“Through drought and famine/natural disasters/my baby has been around for me.”
This song speaks to someone who never thought they would ever be involved with another individual. Whether you thought they were out of your league, or that you never imagined that you two would be compatible, or that you felt you didn’t deserve them. Who would’ve thought I’d get you! In this generation, it’s damn near impossible to find someone who is all for you. This song speaks to that.
“And I’ll take some time/ just to be thankful/ that I had days full of you/ before it winds down into the memories/ it’s all just memories.”
This speaks to my point. Basically, I’ll sit back and be thankful that I even had a love like this. Before something stupid happens and we break this off. Let’s just reflect.
I love this song for its honesty. I feel like I can personally relate to exactly how he felt.
Best Part (feat. H.E.R.)
Before we dive into this song, can we just talk about the features on this album? The voice compatibility with each artist is simply beautiful!
“Best Part” reminds me of Sunday’s. I’m not entirely sure why that correlates, but that’s the feeling I get when I hear it. First of all H.E.R.’s voice is breathtaking.
“You’re the coffee that I need in the morning/ you’re my sunshine in the rain when it’s pouring/ won’t you give yourself to me? / Give it all.”
WOW! Those metaphors describe a love worth craving. This track describes two lovers with so much potential. It’s softly saying I just want to see everything there is to see about you. It’s asking a lover to let your guard down. I want to see all of your flaws. I want to dive deeper into this situation. I want to invest in this. Give it all to me, both perfect and imperfect.
Hold Me Down
“If you love me, baby, let me hear you say it. I know I’m your favorite.”
“First you love me then you leave me in the basement. I know I’m your favorite.”
I think this track might be my favorite on the entire body of work. That opening line just hits my spirit. It’s a statement of reassurance. If you love me, I need you to say it. I need you to remind me. Then it goes in to say, you love me then you leave me so cold. Like what’s up with that? It was all good just a week ago.
Towards the end, this track breaks into a gospel song. When I first heard it, I had to stop like “I know I’ve heard this song before. Wait, this is Kirk Franklin ‘Hold Me Now.’ But it’s not.” Yoooo! When I looked at the title and I just had to breathe because this is just GENIUS! I love gospel music and I love R&B. So to mix the two together, I just couldn’t take it. This is magic.
Those are my top three, in no particular order. It was honestly difficult for me to narrow it down because the entire project is beautiful. Overall, I am grateful for this album as well as the direction R&B is taking. I would certainly give it a 10 out of 10. Congratulations to Daniel Caesar, I will be knocking Freudian for years to come.