“I want love / I need love / But not you,” Steven A. Clark laments on “Not You.” With his debut LP The Lonely Roller, Clark joins the ranks of Lauryn Hill and Adele – perpetually lovelorn yet hopeful R&B romantics cursed to walk the scorched earth searching for love, just to watch it slip away. The Fayetteville, North Carolina native swims laps through an emotional ocean: Smooth highs give way to low, vulnerable croons, then back again. But for all the passion and heartbreak on ready display, this is a vibrant, eclectic record: the title track (which originally arrived last year on his Late EP) and “Time Machine” are dance-worthy, boom-clap bashes, while the giddy “Can’t Have” rides to radio-friendly electro-pop. The record hits its high, ironically, when Clark is at his most low, as on the somber, soulful “Not You.” The Lonely Roller is toe-tapping, heart-melting blues-pop. Purchase it when it drops September 18 via Secretly Canadian.

 

 

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