Strange to imagine this being made to accompany another form, it is so engrossing and elevating, so complete, on its own.
It's easy to get lost in the opulence of the instrumentation, the sweetness of the voice, but it pays to take note of the descriptions of Mayfield, who is always too considered a commentator to pass into pontificating, he offers people as they are, and offers himself right back.
Curtis was almost gratuitously endowed with musical talent, an impassioned performer, staggering voice, accomplished player, and much more. Therefore, it is not surprising that he has given us such an polysemous catalogue of work, from the most carefree, unadulterated pop, to harrowing, distressing lamentations. What marked him out was the ability to have something to say, but never to tire you with polemics, and such a confidence as to know when to shut up and let the sound speak.
If you are a Hip-Hopper who finds themselves engaged in curt, colloquial musings on Production, listen to this and realise that it can, indeed, be an art.
You can try and play this in the background, and be surprised as your feet tap, and your head begins to bob insistently, and make it clear that this is more than worthy of far greater attention. It's equally; absorbing, agitating, hopeful, weary and wistful across the record. But more than anything: it is Funky.
'Little Child Runnin' Wild' and 'No Thing on Me' are simply stunning.
This album would grace any collection, or indeed any room, at any time. I'm so glad I've got my own! Sensational man, sensational sound.