Posts Tagged ‘R&B’

Cheryl Cole: 3 Words | Album Review

October 25, 2009

3 WordsInitially I was thrilled to hear that two of the five member’s of the UK girl group Girls Aloud were going to release solo projects while they are on a break from the band. Cheryl has become one of the most lovable famous faces in Britain today and seems to be somewhat of a national treasure. Apart from the group and in addition she has been a judge on The X Factor, the new face of L’Oreal, and well if your here you probably know all about her so let’s get to it then, yeah?

3 Words is the solo debut and sixth studio album by the British popstar  Cheryl Cole. Her main collaborator was will.i.am and it definitely shows. Cheryl has said that she wanted to break away from the Xenomania-esque sound Girls Aloud has been known for and go for an album with an R&B feel, it was at that moment I sighed a little. What we ended up with was a less than stellar debut, filled with repetitive hooks, meh lyrics, and all in all lack luster tunes. The album itself is a not particularly bad, it’s just not as fantastic as I had hoped for. Cheryl’s 3 Words overall is a(n) occasionally dark,  mid tempo melody of songs about love and clearly reflects on her own life choices.

Here is my quasi-track by track breakdown of 3 Words:

  1. 3 Words (featuring will.i.am): The album’s title track and soon to be second single is a strangely beautiful subdued tune that is among the best the album has to offer. It’s a bold choice for a single, but never the less I enjoy this song. Cheryl has said this is her favorite track on the album.
  2. Parachute: Some of my favorite verses on this album happen in this song. “I don’t tell anyone about the way you hold my hand” backed by a military drum beat that plays throughout the song opens this great track. The chorus is used in just the right amount of moderation (unlike most on the album). Cheryl has said it was between this and ‘Fight For This Love’ for the first single, so maybe this will surface again as the third? Like the ‘3 Words’, this one shines above the rest.
  3. Heaven (featuring will.i.am): Memorizing opening followed by a great intro by Cheryl. Everything about the song is fantastic, except for the over used bit “my heaven’s with you“, it can get a bit annoying. So far so good.
  4. Fight For This Love: The album’s first single is most certainly a grower. I at first was fairly disappointed, but soon enough I began to love it. It’s catchy is a sneaky way! I do cringe a bit at the line “ain’t gonna be no picnic” though. Other than that I am that fool driving down the street singing loudly along to the chorus.
  5. Rain On Me: This is where things take a turn for the worst. Horrible music, horrible lyrics, just an awful track that would be better left off the album. “What’s the price of thunder?” Really Cheryl? I have half a mind to just delete this track and pretend it never existed.
  6. Make Me Cry: A really good R&B tune that is really catchy, but falters due to the extremely repetitious hook “Are you trying to make me cry?“. If they edited out about 3 of the uses each time it plays in repetition I think all will be good. Granted the likelihood of this horrible mistake being corrected is very small.
  7. Happy Hour: Using alcohol as a metaphor, this track is easily one of my favorites on the album. It’s the best out of more upbeat tracks that are sprinkled throughout. A great chorus, great verses, and good production make this a standout track. Catchy enough to sing along to and upbeat enough to get a good dance going on.
  8. Stand Up: This can join ‘Rain On Me’ as one of the worst track’s on the album. Taio Cruz wrote this for her and frankly I think she should have declined. I don’t even know how to explain it… tacky maybe?
  9. Don’t Talk About This Love: Mrs. Cole is clearly talking about asking people not to talk about the whole Ashley Cole businesses. The title suggests that this might be a beautiful, soulful track, well it’s deceiving. The music is fairly light and the lyrics are easily delivered, but it just makes it sound like it was poorly produced.
  10. Boy Like You (featuring will.i.am): Upbeat and seemly fun to dance to. It’s just very underwhelming. The open has me thinking “oh this may build up nice”, but nope. Cheryl’s delivery just makes the chorus and the entire song a borefest.
  11. Heartbreaker (featuring Cheryl Cole): This a will.i.am that is unnecessarily included on her album. She’s in it for about 30 seconds! Cheryl’s part is so tiny is ridiculous. It’s an okay song, it just shouldn’t have been included.

In some final words let me say that I had high expectations for this album due to the fact I’m a huge fan of Girls Aloud. I knew I could possibly be in for heart break the moment I heard she wanted to do an R&B album, but my hopes stayed high. Needless to say she did a decent job on her first real solo venture (in music). Most of 3 Words had to grow on me, but when it did I really enjoyed it. C+

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Discover This: BoA

May 18, 2009

Early this year South Korean artist BoA made her American debut with her self titled album BoA. In a random six degrees of Kevin Bacon way I found via Last.fm (great site).

Let me tell you though… this album is genius. It’s a great mix of electro dance pop with an R&B tinge with upbeat rhythms throughout. Perfect for the dancefloor. So far she has released two single’s off the album called “Eat You Up” and “I Did It For Love (feat. Sean Garrett)”. They are infectious, it’s amazing. Check out the music videos below, she has intense dancing skills too. (It’s like the packaged deal here)

She has wicked moves. Now if you wanna check out more of her music you can listen to her entire debut album on IMEEM here for free. If you like it you can get a copy for just $6.99 on iTunes here. I was so freaking happy when I bought it for that price cos I’m broke as a joke people. This is definitely one of my favorite albums of the year. Each track is one great beat after another!

I hope you give it a listen! And I hope you like it! Comment and let me know what you think…

(oh and for those of you thinking what does BoA stand for? it’s Beat of Angel.)

Song of the Day: ‘À fleur de toi’

March 3, 2009

Artist: Vitaa

Country:  France

I love French music so much because it sounds so beautiful! ‘À fleur de toi’ is the 2007 debut single by R&B  and Soul singer Vitaa. This track is available via our iTunes US along with her great debut album (psst, I’ll take you there). I highly recommend you listen to her other songs, like the song ‘Confessions Nocturnes‘ which helped her gain fame before she got signed for a solo career, and while your at it you should also check out French R&B singer Shy’m. It’s all well good.