Thursday, July 12th, 2018

Maxwell – We Never Saw It Coming

Given the high scores we’ve given him in the past, I don’t think he saw it coming either.


Thomas Inskeep: Beautifully sung, of course, but painfully boring. The least rewarding single of his career.

Micha Cavaseno: The Inferior Maxwell returns, now with a painfully melodramatic and minimal ballad with deliberately mangled notes and weepy sound effects meant to convey depth along with some uh… particularly bad grasps at imagery next to some horrendous Prince biting on his vocals (a trend I thought he’d grown out of!). You get the feeling he’s trying to convey something about perhaps The World, but ambiguity doesn’t quite suit him and ultimately one ends up just suffering through a lot of histrionics about suffering with no point to make.

Iain Mew: An “I Will Always Love You” shorn of its chorus; a concept album closer shorn of its conceptual buildup; an end-credits song shorn of its movie: at least the sense of contextual absence is appropriate even if the results are dull.

Ian Mathers: I like the video version better, both because it amps up and extends that eerie intro and because when something is this on the nose, you might as well be as blunt and stark about it as possible (from the Auden quotation to the ending). It is, as expected from Maxwell, impeccably beautiful, but the question then becomes: what now?

Vikram Joseph: “We Never Saw It Coming” is so glacially slow it almost grinds to a halt on several occasions, and, while Maxwell tremulously over-emotes over the whole thing, the tepid piano and cringing earnestness ensures there’s very little emotion to be drawn by anyone else from the experience. It’s well-intentioned, for sure, but miserably lacking in nuance; if your state-of-the-nation address amounts to sermonising about “bombs blasting” and “religious clashing,” you’d probably be better off singing about something else.

Tim de Reuse: Maxwell mourns the sorry state of the world over the kind of soppy strings you hear when the director wants you to know that you’ve gotten to the sad part of the movie. It’s not subtle, but that’s whatever. To bemoan “division” and “religious clashing” in such general terms, though, that comes awfully close to an “isn’t it sad that we can’t all just get along?” — a true statement without an ounce of oomph behind it, and I see enough of that milquetoast pap from my older relatives on Facebook already.

Alfred Soto: Sure, he sounds gorgeous, but so what?

Reader average: [8] (2 votes)

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3 Responses to “Maxwell – We Never Saw It Coming”

  1. “The Inferior Maxwell returns”

    Lol. As if!

  2. Like it or not, there’s only one Maxwell who’s important to this site…

  3. personally i think that’s fucked up