James Blake and Anderson .Paak go well together.
The pairing of James Blake and Anderson .Paak is not an obvious one. Musically, the two don't seem to have a lot of similarities, but "Bloody Waters" gracefully finds common ground. On the production side, Robin Hannibal, formerly of Rhye, joins Sounwave and Kendrick for a beat that offers enough structure to hold everything together but ample space for Blake, Ab-Soul, and .Paak to take the wheel. Ab-Soul does his thing, but what's made clear here is that James Blake and Anderson .Paak do have something in common, even though it's hard to pinpoint. There's a free-flowing soul to both of them, and when they're given space, they're able to weave together complex deliveries that don't adhere to typical song structures or expectations. "Bloody Waters" showcases two of modern music's strongest presences, and the fact that it works so well together makes us hope we hear this combination again.