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4.3 out of 5 stars22
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 4 September 2001
I was lucky enough to get an early copy from New York, and I was very excited at the prospect of a new Maxwell CD.
Urban Hang Suite is a legendary debut, and as is often the way with such exceptional debuts, the follow-ups just never quite live up to their predecessor. "Now" is an accomplished piece of work - of that there is no doubt, but it is missing that rambling, suggestive mood of his debut, and it is not layered with the dramatic and powerful saxaphone arrangements so amazingly interwoven throughout Urban Hang Suite.
Embrya was much more of an introspective CD, which worked brilliantly after the seduction of his first. Embrya is something that needs to grow and mature withthe listener, often criticised unfairly by many reviewers. Again the expectation of Urban Hang Suite II is not reasonable.
NOW is more obvious, more groove laden, more the work of an established artists, looking to keep commercially in touch!. Very evident are many other influences from the likes of Prince (really laid on thick in the opening track), shades of other soul artists feature, Macy Gray type effects, Sade is never far away...but there is something missing.
Make no mistake, you should buy this CD, there are some exceptional trax, but do not expect another Urban Hang Suite, despite many saying this is the natural successor to that CD - it is not as complete a work. This CD contains some beautiful songs, and as a seductive disc it WILL deliver, but it does not transcend soul music and it does not show any real maturity from Maxwell. Perhaps Maxwell made his life difficult by launching his commercial career with such a stunning debut, and whatever else he comes up with just isn't going to melt us all away like UHS did.
A few lessons from Prince musically, but not enough in a career sense..earlier in Prince's colourful career he (Prince) had the ability to change, to shock and to challenge the listener...he was not complacent...maybe this is the problem with "Now" from Maxwell, a little complacent.
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on 23 August 2001
The new Maxwell album, his third, is not only a welcome return to the public eye, but also a revisit to the Urban Hang Suite. A record three years in the making, displaying the laid-back funk and classic voice that launched the 'nu-soul' movement.
The inspiration of Marvin Gaye and Prince is evident throughout, producing a sound that is developed from his debut, and more accessable than 'Embrya', his mature second record.
The music is expertly arranged, as we have come to expect, and lyrically masterful. Check 'Changed' and 'Get To Know Ya' as examples of this man's talent. This record is fresh, artistically sophisticated and very 'Now'.
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on 3 March 2002
Well despite all the reviews I'm still sticking by my original guns. I've had this for some time now and despite re-reviews at various times I still haven't been able to endear myself to this album. This album is alright and that is all I can say. I agree with an earlier reviewer in that Maxwell has probably gone a bit more to the commercial mainstream with this outing. Where are the intricate melodies and sax laden sound that so defined Urban Hang Suite?
Call the lyrics modern but on Get to Know ya singing about not trying to get into your trousers isn't really intelligent, especially for one so gifted as Maxwell. Perhaps there is an UHS II in the making but this is a long way from it. If you like Maxwell you'll buy iy but there isn't much on this to jump up and down about.
There are one or two tracks that are encouraging, This Woman's Work a Kate Bush song which he also covered on the uncut album is excellent but there are not enough moments on this album to warrant anything more than three stars.
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on 6 September 2001
This albums gets right into your soul. Maxwell has done it this time, but only 100 times better!
Track after track, Maxwell's voice serenades you with sensual rhythms leaving you all "goose bumped" out! "Changed" and the Kate Bush cover "This Woman's Work" proves that..
This is definetly the album of the year!
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on 31 December 2004
Maxwell never really struck me as a great artist i was first introduced to him in 1998 when i saw the video for "Sumthin' Sumthin'" the song stuck in my head for a good few weeks i was very sceptical on buying the "Urban Hang Suite" as i'd not really heard from him before (I no how late was i).Never really listenin to "Embrya" as i heard it wasnt that good so i kinda avoided it but by the time "Get To Know Ya" was released i knew what i had to do...purchase "Now".It's one of the best albums i own i was really quick to judge Maxwell as i was a stern D'Angelo fan since "Brown Sugar" so i saw Maxwell as jus a wannabe I WAS WRONG!!
1.[Untitled Track]/What the hell?????? 4 seconds of nothing whats was the point N/A
2.Get To Know Ya/The 1st explosive single i love this up-beat acoustic number its one of the best tracks on the album its about trying to get to know a woman that wont give him the time of day great song 10/10
3.Lifetime/The 2nd single at first i thought this was a bit whingy and stale but after a few listens u start to feel Maxwells originality the song itself is a highlight not a great single release but its a great song 9/10
4.W/As My Girl/At first i was thinkin "oh dear typing error" but its not its "Was/As My Girl" very clever or jus lazyness?? nice laid back sexy jam hes voice really shines on this one its surprisingly catchy considering the tempo 10/10
5.Changed/Wasn't a fan of this one but slowly grew on me hes voice is outstanding i love the chorus its got a great vibe it seems its about a love gone awry cool song 10/10
6.NoOne/One of the best songs on the album seemin like a filler at first but gradually u wish it was a single release its up-beat and really funky its actually sweet in its own way just sayin theres no one like hes lover awww! 10/10
7.For Lover's Only/With a name like "For Lover's Only" you instantly think its a baby-maker which is the beat is so soft and sensual its ideal for making love the words are just outstanding (how does he come up with this stuff) 10/10
8.Temporary Nite/I did actually hear this song before i got the album on a "Nu Soul" mix-tape back in February of 2001 before the album was released in August 01 the funky guitar riff gives it a great edgy feel its simply just about a one night stand lol 10/10
9.Silently/This song is so so sexy its another one of the albums better track (which most of em are)it has a slight eastern feel to it and also very laid back 9/10
10.Symptom Unknown/The first line its my favourite part "There's An Ocean/Drained Of All It's Been/Took A Bath/But Just Cant Keep Clean" what a poetic and deep man Maxwell is this is definatly one of my fav tracks hes vocals are also wonderfully delicate 10/10
11.This Woman's Work/The Kate Bush cover i seriously gotta say im not really a fan of it, it was also featured in the movie "Love & Basketball" having never heard the original i cant compare but as for what ive heard from people this version is very very good its a nice song but never really listened to it 8/10
12.Now/At The Party/The infectious guitar riff and the pounding bass makes this song a great one i would love to hear this one live.It takes a while for him to start singing but really do we really need it the songs just satisfying listenin to the intrumental love it 10/10
Overall i will be buying Maxwell's previous work this album really woke me up to see just how great Maxwell is
Top 5 Now Tunes
1.Get To Know Ya
3.Symptom Unknown
4.Temporary Nite
5.Now/At The Party
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on 10 June 2004
Most people who like Maxwell's music would identify this album as the weak one. Its only weak simply because the first two were outstanding.
"Now" has a different feel to the others, and was set out to have more cross over appeal. The lyrics are not as deep and meaningful, but the music is still very good.
The album kicks off with perhaps its best track "Get To Know Ya". Its a track which is very catchy and talks about Maxwell simply getting to know a very nice lady. Lacks the depth in which "Sumthin Sumthin" had from the debut set, but still a track to look at.
My personal favourite on the album is "No One" which has gone into my top 3 Maxwell songs of all time. I recommend you by the album for this track alone. Shades of Prince are evident, but there is something about Maxwell's style that makes it his own.
"Temporary Nite" is another stormer. So funky you will fall off your chair. Maxwell dips into the rock/funk that prince did so successfully. To be honest this Track could have easily been the one I was saying was the best on here. Its that damn good.
Ballad wise, there are some nice track. "For Lovers Only" is nice but no where near previous efforts such as "Till The Cops" and "Drown deep".
"Was/My Girl" is better, but still lacks a certain edge that we know Maxwell can deliver.
On his Mtv Unplugged, set of a few years previous he did a cover of "This Womans Work" which was made famous by Kate Bush. He didn't include it on the Embrya album but has doen so here. Its not as good as that live version but it is still a fantastic cover. He makes it his own, and anyone who knows the orginal will know that is a hard thing to do. Actually, trying to cover any Kate Bush track is going to be a task.
"Now/At the Party" is the final track which is again very funky. A long muscial intro is mixed into Maxwell's cool soulful voice, to end the album on a high.
"Now" is not as memorable as his first two. But it still has its moments. Maxwell is a true performer in my eyes, and I cannot wait for his next set because I am almost certain there will be many tracks on there like on here which you just sit back and say, 'yeah'.
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on 2 February 2006
one of the best albums u cud wish to purchase. unique, soulful and brilliant!!! buy it now if u havent already
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on 6 October 2012
This album is great, smooth elegant.
I still not listened his frist work that seems to be even better (it will be on my next amazon order)
but this album is so fresh, so positive so cool, perfect soundtrack for you romantic nights but lso or even more to listen with your better headphone and just enjoy.
Maxwell - Now... If are thinking to buy don t esitate.
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on 26 December 2006
Loved urban hang suite-a truly great debut.This is more of the same but it does contain a fresh approach.Maxwell explores his vocal talents to a greater degree on this album within a slightly popier environment but do NOT let this detract from the sheer soulfulness of this set.

This album contains some great seriously emotive vocals which deserve your attention.
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on 25 April 2008
I have a few words that explain this album.

1. Bliss
2. Talent
3. Music
4. Emotional
5. Unique

Just buy it. I have this CD for years! I was bought the CD the next day after it was released. I am still loving it. Enough said.
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