It has been nearly two years since Miguel released his last album, Wildheart, but when he hit the stage at Spotify's pop-up show in a secret Brooklyn venue on Nov. 27, it was as if no time had passed.
As a premature celebration for the release of his upcoming fourth studio album, War & Leisure, Miguel performed for an intimate group of fans, walking through a timeline of his greatest hits, leading up to his newest singles off the LP. Illuminated by the blue, green, and magenta hues of the stage lights, the crooner reminded us all why he deserves props for keeping the traditional vocals of R&B alive --- while also intertwining elements of folk and indie-rock music in his tunes as well.
Unlike fellow musicians who attempt to recreate his magic, it's difficult to tell the difference between his live rendition and the actual record. His performances of "Adorn" and "How Many Drinks" were nearly spot on, only differing by random riffs and high-pitch notes.
Although Miguel reminded fans of his biggest singles, he also looked to the future, playing his three, newly-released tracks, "Skywalker," "Come Through and Chill," and "Told You So." Each record differs from one another, but they all stress the singer's range rhythmically and in terms of story-telling.
Based on the pre-released records, it's not completely transparent to what War & Leisure will offer fans, but Miguel previously told Billboard that this project was inspired by a political awakening of sorts. "This album is intentionally about the ethos right now, that we are right in the middle of all this," he told the publication. "We’re trying to flourish in the middle of all this. We all wake up, and it’s time to be creative and amazing and positive and all the things that we’re supposed to be when you look on Instagram, but then we’re dealing with these same problems, this injustice, wars between politicians with egos. Like, 140 characters are going to get us into a war right now?"
War & Leisure debuts on Friday, Dec. 1. In addition to the his electric performance last night, Miguel recently shared the official tracklist for his forthcoming project. Check it out below, along with clips from the Spotify pop-up show here.