We gave it a B
Simple, soulful, and street-smart, Cope’s third disc, Every Waking Moment, is buttressed by his usual array of churchy organ riffs and gentle hip-hop beats. The difference is that the raspy-voiced singer (born Clarence Greenwood) is more introspective, abandoning the offbeat characters (mostly hustlers and underdogs) who often inhabit his songs. It’s a refreshing change, resulting in a personal CD that jumps between ballads (”Somehow”), romantic grooves (”More Than It Seems”), and weary observations (”Friendly Fire”). Cope’s rough edges may keep him from blowing up, but that gritty charm is actually his finest asset.