NEW YORK (Billboard) - After an eight-year year hiatus, R&B singer Maxwell returns to stores on July 7 with his fourth studio album, "BLACKsummer'snight."
The nine-track Columbia Records set, the first installment of a planned trilogy, was recorded with a ten-piece band. The first single, the lullaby-like "Pretty Wings," was released Tuesday.
Other tracks include the regretful "Bad Habits," a mid-tempo number with big horns and layered voice-overs; "Cold," about a cold-hearted lover; and the jazz-like "Stop The World," with heavy guitars and kick drums.
Maxwell plans to hit the road this summer, and will headline the Essence Music Fest in New Orleans on July 4. This trek follows his fall 2008 tour, Maxwell's first in six years. Although not supported by any new material, the tour sold out every stop.
Maxwell's last album, 2001's "Now," has sold 1.8 million copies in the United States, according to Nielsen Soundscan.
(Editing by Dean Gooodman at Reuters)