For 25-year-old Leon Bridges, the comparisons to Sam Cooke are inevitable because of this music. The young R&B singer and guitarist from Fort Worth, Texas fashions himself in only the finest vintage threads, and takes obvious aesthetic influence from Mr. Soul. The cover of Coming Home features the same color scheme, posture and imagery as Cooke’s 1964 Ain’t That Good News. But more importantly, Bridges sounds like the 21st century reincarnation of Cooke, with his smooth, soulful croon directly out the turbulent times of the early 1960s.
Coming Home represents the spiritual cleansing and soulful healing we need right now. It’s the sound of an era where civil rights seemed so desperate, but progress also felt in reach. And if Coming Home can incite those memories and connections, maybe it could also serve as the soundtrack for a better future in which a change might come, after all.