Leon Bridges came out of virtually nowhere in 2014 to begin a sky’s-the-limit career. The Fort Worth singer-songwriter performs vintage soul and blues with a heart and sincerity that keeps it from playing like pure pastiche, backed by a band that features former members of Austin indie rock stalwart White Denim. His debut album, Coming Home, peaked at No. 6 on the Billboard chart, was certified gold, and earned him a Grammy nomination for Best R&B Album. It was the kind of wildly successful debut that leads to the inevitable question: What do you do for a follow-up?
The answer, so far, has been to tour, record, pop in for guest appearances on records by artists including Lecrae, Odesza, and Macklemore—and leave your fans waiting for new music. The wait’s nearly over, though, as Bridges’s sophomore album, Good Thing, drops May 4. To promote it, he’s got the first video from the album, for the song “Bad Bad News,” out now.
The video stars Bridges, keeping it down with his band in an unspecified dance hall (which we’ll assume is somewhere in Texas), as writer and model Paloma Elsesser walks with a purpose after being whistled at on a train platform in New York City. As she marches with determination, ostensibly to pursue the man responsible, she finds herself inspired to dance, with moves resembling the ones Bridges lays down in the dance hall. Directed by music video and commercial director Natalie Rae, the video is captivating and weird, and—with “Bad Bad News” as one of four singles Bridges released earlier this month to promote Good Thing—a sign that what Bridges does next might have some new edges to it.