Though it’s nowhere near as bad as waiting more than a decade for new music, D’Angelo is coming up on four years without putting out new music since releasing his long-awaited, absolutely stellar Black Messiah back in 2014. While there’s been little word on when his next full-length album is set to arrive, some small consolation has arrived in the form of a new track that’s, uh, played during a scene in the recently released video game Western Red Dead Redemption 2.
Though Red Dead 2 creators Rockstar advertised the contributions of musicians like Colin Stetson, Arca, and Queens Of The Stone Age/ex-Mars Volta drummer Jon Theodore before the game’s release last Friday, it’s kept the inclusion of other artists a secret. Music critic Craig Jenkins tweeted about the existence of the haunting acoustic track, which plays between Red Dead 2 missions, this morning, and we’ve since confirmed that it is, in fact, new D’Angelo.
It’s also, as you can hear for yourself below, extremely good.
Rockstar’s games have a long tradition of featuring excellent musical guests, including similar musical interludes by José González and Jamie Lidell from the first Red Dead Redemption to an original score (including the devastating “Tears”) by Health for 2012's Max Payne 3. Nabbing something new from D’Angelo, though, is a pretty exceptional highlight.
After accomplishing this, the sky seems the limit for what surprise video game tracks to expect next. Who knows, maybe Outkast and Fugazi will collaborate on the soundtrack for another Halo, Neutral Milk Hotel will soundtrack the next Call Of Duty, and Dr. Dre will come out of retirement to repurpose Detox as theme music for a bold new direction for Mario.
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