September 24, 2006
I’ve given up trying to figure out Brandy. She’s hid out in the spotlight for too long, never tip-toeing outside her role as a teen diva-in-training, never catching flak for being a manufactured urban princess like Ashanti either. Ten amazing and terrifically impersonal years into her career, we don’t know any more about Brandy than we did in 1994, when she was a 15 year old newcomer who just desperately wanted to be down.
And that’s exactly the way she likes it, at least if Afrodisiac is any indication. Brandy wrote barely any of the lyrics herself, but the story she tells is still revealingly oblique. Afrodisiac’s being marketed as a coming-of-age record, but this isn’t the kind of “all growns up” we’re used to seeing from our female pop stars, all newly unwrapped sexuality prepackaged for maximum male hormonal meltdown—dams bursting, speeding trains, shooting fireworks, the previously coquettish young innocent dead and buried, completely eradicated so you don’t feel bad for leering at Moesha or a Mouseketeer, replaced by a brand-new fully-formed sex symbol.
Brandy briefly tries on that bare-all ensemble for “Come As You Are”, but it never quite seems to fit. Tellingly, she’d rather reminisce than stake out brazen new sexual territory—one of the album’s best and brightest cuts, “Turn it Up”, finds Brandy waxing nostalgic for Kid 'N Play's House Party, of all things.
September 20, 2006
Tex Mex Rocks
Great new long anticipated album from LLB. I dont think its a s good as their first album, but anything these guys do is great. Highlights are 'Oye Mamacita', 'My Lonliness' 'Orale'. Something here for everyone, country, rock, soul. Well Done!!
September 16, 2006
September 13, 2006
In the past, that voice has conveyed untold worlds of pain and anguish, but on Blige's fifth studio album, No More Drama, it's put to good use mining the foreign terrain of happiness, contentment, and other emotions seemingly antithetical to the soul singer's tragedy-filled milieu.
September 9, 2006
album review: I first heard of Jennifer Rush when her duet with Elton John, "Flames Of Paradise" hit the Top 40, and I was taken by the resonant, deep but exotic voice that accompanied Elton. The rest of the album is a combination of fiery guitar rock and heavy synthesizers, not like Ron Nevison's brand. Four producers cooked the broth that became Heart Over Mind, along with well-known songwriters and session musicians, and the differing styles make a symphonic mlange of 80's synth/rock guitar music.
The intense keyboards and crunchy rock guitars, the latter done here by Bon Jovi's Ritchie Sambora demonstrate that sound in "I Come Undone" which has the intensity of Cutting Crew's "I Just Died In Your Arms." Ellen Shipley, well known for her association with Belinda Carlisle's solo albums, wrote and did backing vocals for here.
Desmond Child produced and co-wrote "Down To You" call it a power keyboard ballad, highlighted by sheets of synths over which Jen's voice rises in its glory.
September 8, 2006
notes: America's funkiest white boy puts even more distance between his boy-band past and his present career with FUTURESEX/LOVESOUNDS, the follow-up to his 2002 smash JUSTIFIED. The album is set for a September 12 release and features a slew of money-in-the-bank producers including Rick Rubin, Timbaland, and Will.i.am.