Review: Miguel Throws a Psychedelic-Funk Party for a World in Flames

Our take on the R&B star's fourth album, 'War & Leisure'

Miguel's fourth album is 'War & Leisure.'

The L.A. soul explorer's fourth album creates a space where psych-funk splendor coexists with deep anxiety. It's not all downers: "Pineapple Skies" punctuates its bubbly synths with speaker-rattling bass hits, as Miguel's amped-up vocals make his "everything gonna be all right" exhortations feel like a mantra. But uncertainty creeps in at the margins: The skeletal booty call "Come Through and Chill" references Colin Kaepernick and "Trump saying slick shit," while "Now" ends the LP with Miguel's voice slicing through clouds of guitar, as he reels off a list of social ills. In 2017, every pleasure comes with a shot of pain.