Surely, we can’t be alone in celebrating this new era of music that Usher is reigning in with his latest COMING HOME. The artist has finally returned to reclaim the R&B throne. Here’s our album breakdown:
Break Down COMING HOME: Tracks 1-10
Starting off with the title track, Usher envelops listeners in the sound of this album right off the bat. Featuring Burna Boy, “Coming Home” is a great segue into the 20-track album, setting the scene for an R&B vibe with nostalgic nods back to the Usher we grew to love back in 2012. The title track feeds into “Good Good,” a phenomenal song featuring both Summer Walker and 21 Savage, released back in 2023. The collaboration shines in a subtle way—between Usher’s storytelling feeding into Summer’s angelic vocals and 21 Savage capping off the track, song #2 sets the bar high for the remainder of the album.
Playing off of the iconic “Uptown Girl” by Billy Joel, Usher’s own “A-Town Girl” is a fun, modern twist on Usher’s dream woman. With Latto joining in on “A-Town Girl,” we are reminded that this album can contend with current artists and albums despite its nostalgic roots. It’s not the strongest song by far, but it sure is fun. Admittedly, “Cold Blooded” isn’t noteworthy enough to comment on—merely taking space on the tracklist. At the very least, it feeds into one of my personal favorites, “Kissing Strangers.”
“Kissing Strangers” is what I’d deem the perfect balance of Usher’s R&B persona bridging to more upbeat, modern-day pop. It’s got everything you could ask for: a catchy chorus, a nice display of vocal range and a great beat from start to finish. In more ways than one, this song shines on its own. The vibe carries over into “Keep On Dancin’,” which lives up to its name. Similarly to the previous track, “Dancin'” is another 5/5. It’s a great production that begs you to raise the volume and move your feet. It seems that even after all this time, Usher’s still got it.
The next four tracks are all good in their own ways. The H.E.R. collab, “Risk It All,” slows it down enough to ease into “Bop.” It picks back up with “Stone Kold Freak” before transitioning into a more afro-beat, seductive track—”Ruin,” featuring Pheelz. Check out the music video down below:
COMING HOME: Tracks 11-20
“BIG” is an interesting track to introduce the second half of COMING HOME. Especially as it leads into “On The Side,” a telltale track about falling in love with your secret romance. There’s a sort of whiplash that comes with singing about McDonald’s in “BIG” before wrenching your heart out about unrequited love. In that regard, maybe better decisions could’ve been made in the order of the album. Or maybe the order doesn’t matter at all?
“I Am The Party” and the following four tracks are the most quintessential Usher tracks on this album. It’s got the key components of the artist, with heavier influences of R&B in comparison to the first half of COMING HOME. It’s a shame that the second half started with “BIG,” because each track that follows is genuinely great. In fact, it’s a wonder this album is so long when it could’ve been just as strong with half the number of songs. Between “Please U,” “Luckiest Man” and “Room In A Room,” that explicit warning is heavily used. Let’s just say that the album cover starts to really make sense once we dive into the B-Side…
Lastly, we can’t discuss COMING HOME without touching on the legendary Usher x Jung Kook collaboration that is “Standing Next to You.” The BTS singer adds a new layer to the track and meets Usher line by line. It’s a collab that we didn’t know we needed in our lives until it dropped. And now that we have it, we just can’t get enough. “Standing Next to You” is one hell of a way to conclude the album. Though it better matches the energy in the first half of COMING HOME, it’s the definition of going out with a bang.
Listen to the album down below! Let us know what you think in the comments.