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50 Best Albums of 2012

36

Bobby Womack, 'The Bravest Man in the Universe'


Bobby Womack, 'The Bravest Man in the Universe'
36/50

At age 68, the guy who wrote the Rolling Stones' first Number One hit ("It's All Over Now") teams up with Blur's Damon Albarn and producer Richard Russell for a deeply soulful, startlingly modern R&B set. Like Russell's 2010 collaboration with Gil Scott-Heron, Bravest Man is mainly about magnified vocal grain and electronic rhythms, and the arrangements never fail to dazzle: The first bars of the title track, just Womack's warm-leather voice and a cello, may be the most striking album opener of the year.


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