Back in 2011, Electropop/Dance music ruled all over the airwaves with hit songs like “We Found Love”, “Party Rock Anthem” and “On The Floor”. Even though we didn’t get to see a huge transition from 2011 to 2012, but we shall say that last year we were able to see more and more non-mainstream acts becoming popular.
"Somebody That I Used To Know" by Australian singers, Gotye and Kimbra and "We Are Young" by Alternative/Rock band fun. and R&B/Soul singer Janelle Monae were two of the year’s biggest hits. I’m not saying that both were pure Indie songs, but at least we got to see more variation on music charts and it would probably help and open the doors for more non-Pop singers to get recognized by the general public.
Oppa Gangnam Style
We were also able to witness several interesting newcomers. Of course we all know the song “Gangnam Stye” by Korean singer, Psy (pictured), which is still one of the hottest songs on the radio right now thanks to its viral video which introduces its signature dance moves to the world. Not to forget Carly Rae Jepsen’s number one hit, “Call Me Maybe”, which has spawned several parodies on YouTube based on the video.
The Rise of R&B
Another notable ‘newcomers’ last year were Frank Ocean and The Weeknd. Along with Miguel (pictured), the three of them popularized a new sound of R&B which is often refered as Alternative R&B, or even some people call it Electrosoul. Basically, we can say that Alternative R&B aims to modernize the sound of R&B by creating a fusion between traditional R&B and Electronic music without losing the soul itself in R&B. “Thinkin Bout You” (Frank Ocean), “Wicked Games” (The Weeknd) and “Adorn” (Miguel) are the perfect examples to describe Alternative R&B. Even, some of the bigger stars had already tried to incorporate this genre onto their sound, for example, “Climax” & “I Care 4 U” by Usher and “I Miss You” by Beyoncé.
Song fact: “Adorn” by Miguel, is currently the longest-running number one single on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay Chart, topping the chart for eighteen consecutive weeks so far.
Even though we got to see much improvement in music last year, some singers were still stuck and had not able to move on from the more popular Electropop/Dance sound. Chris Brown (pictured) & Ne-Yo for example, they ruled the charts last year with hit singles including “Turn Up The Music”, “Don’t Wake Me Up and “Let Me Love You (Until You Learn To Love Yourself)”. But on the other side, they began to lose their core fans who were there for their R&B music, the genre that helped them gaining solid fanbases, which can be seen visibly on their low album sales. The same thing happened to Usher & Nicki Minaj as well, even though looks like Nicki is trying to re-build her Hip Hop fanbase by keep releasing Rap songs in the past couple of months, including “Freedom” and “The Boys”, which features American R&B/Pop songstress, Cassie.
Song fact: “Turn Up The Music” is Chris Brown’s first number single in the UK. He had spawned dozen of top ten hits before including “Run It”, “With You”, “No Air” and “Yeah 3x”.
The Dirty Side of Hip-Hop
Sadly, we didn’t get to see much improvement in Hip-Hop either. Many big Hip-Hop songs were still talking about partying, drinking, bitches and stuff like that. Yup, we missed the Hip-Hop songs that actually talk about life and well-written with lyrics that can relate to ourselves.
But, indeed, 2012 was a pretty good year for music overall. Of course, we’re looking forward for a better year in 2013, especially with comebacks from several huge names in Pop music such as Beyoncé, Justin Timberlake (yes, he’s releasing a new single next Monday) and Britney Spears. Together, we’re hoping to witness the greatness of music in 2013, amen.
*Images courtesy of indoBOOM, United Virtuoso & Faux Society.
After teasing the fans with the release of Inevitable EP last year - which spawned the hit single “Sex Ain’t Better Than Love” - Trey Songz is back with his fifth studio album, simply entitled Chapter V.
The R&B crooner must be celebrating his success right now, as “Simply Amazing” is currently sitting at number eight on the UK Singles Chart. The soft-rock influenced track is officially becoming his first top ten single in the country. Previously, the smash hit “Bottoms Up” only reached number seventy-four, while “Heart Attack” peaked at number twenty-eight. Stateside, “Heart Attack” and the T.I.-assisted “2 Reasons” still can be found in the top ten of Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs.
"Heart Attack" - taken as Chapter V's first single - is definitely one of the finest R&B numbers this year so far as it really shows the different side of Trey's music and also has the appeals to Pop audience. Unfortunately, that big step-up is then going down again with the release of “2 Reasons”, a club banger in which Trey's talking about bitches ladies and the drinks.
Even though this album is said to be ‘a change’ from his previous works, looks like he’s not ready to leave his signature sound yet, baby-making R&B slow jams. The “Neighbors Know My Name“‘s cousin, “Dive In” is climbing up the Urban chart and may have a little competition from another song with the similar title, “Dive” by another hitmaker, Usher. Also, there’s “Panty Wetter” - a song’s title that will make you curious to know what is the song about.
However, there are always several songs on every of his album that actually have some depth and great lyrical content into it. We had “Last Time” from Trey Day, “Can’t Be Friends” from Passion, Pain & Pleasure and this time, we have “Pretty Girl’s Lie”. A vulnerable R&B track where Trey really shines both with his vocals and emotions. Another standout track vocally and lyrically is “Bad Decision”. We also have “Check Me Out” - a collaboration with rappers Meek Mill and Diddy - where the singer is trying to show off his rapping skills, and “Without A Woman” which might remind you of retro jams from R. Kelly or Stevie Wonder back then.
Overall, it does contain several great tracks, but sadly the ‘maturity’ and ‘growth’ of the album are still overshadowed by several meaningless songs including those sex jams and club bangers, which makes it no different from any of his previous records. However, for all the mainstream R&B lovers who may have been disappointed with the latest releases from Usher & Chris Brown, should definitely check this one out.
Favorite tracks: “Heart Attack”, “Pretty Girl’s Lie”, “Check Me Out”, “Without A Woman”
Daniel Dwayne Simmons III, better known as Diggy Simmons maybe is just a newcomer in the Rap game, but there’s no doubt that he could be up there competing with the other Hip-Hop veterans one day. Earlier this year, he introduced us with his debut album Unexpected Arrival, which unfortunately, failed to gain some commercial success.
Yet, Unexpected Arrival still provides some easy-listening Hip-Hop songs, fits perfectly for his young audience. You might hear some heavy Drake & Kanye West influences in a couple tracks as well.
The first two singles “Copy Paste” and “Do It Like You” received moderate success on the radio. However, it’s “88” that might catch your attention. The Jadakiss-assisted track samples Big Sean’s & Nicki Minaj’s “Dance” and both are produced by Da Internz (also produced Rihanna’s & Chris Brown’s “Birthday Cake”) so you may think that the beat sounds really familiar - and it goes hard! Another likable track is “4-Letter Word”, an R&B midtempo cut in which Diggy sings about his love for the ladies.
"Two Up" is undoubtedly the best track off the album, and it would be really stupid for not releasing it as a single. Last but not least, "Glow In The Dark" could really be the ‘it’ track and could gain him more respect among the other rappers. Sadly, there isn’t that much variation on this album but it doesn’t stop it from becoming one of the finest releases of 2012 so far, especially that this record comes from a 17-year old.
Even though the album is not doing as well as many people expected, there are still many ways for Diggy to go up there. He’s still young and the journey is still very long for him.
Favorite Tracks: “Two Up”, “Glow In The Dark”, “88” (feat. Jadakiss), “Hello World”
With “Payphone” topping the charts all over the world, the album Overexposed is finally here. As Adam Levine says, it’s their Poppiest album to date - it’s true and sadly, there’s no Maroon 5’s signature Alternative/Funk/Soul sound on the album. But thankfully, there are quite a few jams that make up for it though.
The album opener, “One More Night” is a reggae-tinged banger that probably sounds the closest to their signature sound. It’s also picked as the second single and the video has already been released. “Doin’ Dirt” is an uptempo Dance/Pop song that has the potential to be a single as it’s one of the most loved tracks by the fans. The most standout track off the album for me personally, is “Beautiful Goodbye”. If I have to describe it, it’s a very relaxing Pop mid-tempo with some R&B and reggae influences, kind of sound like a slower and a more soulful version of Travie McCoy’s and Bruno Mars’s “Billionaire”. Adam also really puts his heart out in the depressing piano ballad, “Sad”. To those who are still questioning Adam’s vocal ability really should take a listen to this song.
Last but not least, for all the Maroon 5 fans in Indonesia, make sure you don’t miss the band performing live in Jakarta, 4-5 October 2012, sponsored by Java Musikindo.
Chris Brown himself stated last year that there’s going to be a second part of F.A.M.E. entitled Fortune. Plans changed, and in the end Fortune is turning into a separate release, becoming his fifth studio album. Early fan-favorites “Calypso” and “Sweetheart” were also scrapped from the record.
The first single, “Turn Up The Music” is a dance-floor anthem, it reached number ten on the Billboard Hot 100 following his Grammy performance, followed by the Hip-Hop banger “Till I Die” featuring Big Sean & Wiz Khalifa, and the baby-making jam “Sweet Love”. Sadly, both songs didn’t do well on the charts even though it looks like “Till I Die” is having a second life on Urban radio. The current single, Benny Benassi-assisted “Don’t Wake Me Up” is still doing great overseas, reaching the top ten in the UK, Ireland, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and Scotland. Today, RCA has just announced that the touching ballad “Don’t Judge Me” is going to be the next single.
"Mirage", a collaboration with rapper Nas is easily the album’s highlight and is screaming for a single release. Also there are "Bassline" which sounds like the electro version of "Look At Me Now", and "Trumpet Lights" - an unsual dance anthem. Brown decides to slow it down and shows off his singing ability in "Cadillac" (interlude) - a vocal duet with Rich-Girl’s member, Sevyn. Another attention-catching track is "Biggest Fan" - a mid-tempo Pop song which was actually supposed to be the album’s lead single. "Strip" also appears on the record. The Kevin McCall-collabo was previously recorded for Brown’s mixtape, Boy in Detention.
The rest of the album, sadly, are just bland and kind of unnecessary. Also, things weren’t looking really good for the album. The album debuted in the US at number one, but with his second lowest first week sales ever, 135,000 copies, a half of what F.A.M.E.'s done it its first week. The reviews are not helping either, scoring 41 out of 100 according to Metacritic. What he's been doing recently on Twitter kinda makes the situation worse too. But still, the album is worth to buy, kind of, at least for us, Team Breezy… probably.
Favorite tracks: “Mirage” (feat. Nas), “Don’t Wake Me Up”, “Biggest Fan”, “Turn Up The Music”, “Trumpet Lights” (feat. Sabrina Antoinette)
One of the biggest names in Pop music, Usher is back with his latest release Looking 4 Myself.
The new project introduces the fans into a new ‘Revolutionary Pop’ sound - as Usher says, which is basically ‘mixing R&B and Soul with some Electronic’ sound. The fans, however, didn’t seem to interest that much into this project as the album debuted with his second lowest first week sales ever in the US, 128,000 copies, a big let down from Raymond V Raymond's 329,000 copies, Here I Stand's 433,000 and of course Confessions's 1,100,000 copies.
However, the critics didn’t agree as Looking 4 Myself received generally positive reviews according to Metacritic. The first single “Climax” spent 11 non-consecutive weeks at the top of Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs. “Climax” is an R&B ballad, sung over Diplo’s Electronic sound - easily one of the most refreshing R&B tracks of the year so far. The first Pop single, “Scream” is still sitting inside the top 10 of Billboard Hot 100 while the second Urban single, the Rick Ross-assisted “Lemme See” reached number two on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs.
Another album standout is “Twisted”, a Pharell Williams’s production. It’s a 60’s retro-soul track which Usher describes as a nostalgic track and reminds you of songs recorded by Cee-Lo Green or Bruno Mars. Also there is “Sins of My Father” - a midtempo Soul song with Motown & Reggae influences. The title-track “Looking 4 Myself” incorporates Alternative & Pop elements and draws comparisons to Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used To Know” even though it sounds much lighter and funkier. “Numb” and “Euphoria” both will definitely become club smashes, while “Dive” no doubt will satisfy his R&B audience.
Favorite tracks: “Looking 4 Myself” (feat. Luke Steele), “Sins Of My Father”, “Twisted” (feat. Pharrell), “Climax”, “Lemme See (feat. Rick Ross)”
Back in December last year, Justin Bieber took all the girls Under The Mistletoe with his very first Christmas album. 7 months later, he comes back with the new album Believe which he describes sounding more mature than his previous records.
The Hip-Hop-influenced “Boyfriend” was chosen to be the first single and has successfully conquered the airwaves, becoming one of his biggest hits to date. Now, the Biebs readies for the next single with the Big Sean-assisted track “As Long As You Love Me” - a Dubstep-tinged Pop tune. The video, directed by Anthony Mandler (“Disturbia”, “Irreplaceable”) sets to premiere next Wednesday on his official Vevo/YouTube channel.
Believe itself incorporates elements of Pop, R&B, Dance and even Hip-Hop, with some help from several high profile producers including Diplo, Hit-Boy, Darkchild, Max Martin and Mike Posner.
3 promotional singles were released prior the album release, “As Long As You Love Me”, the club banger “All Around The World” featuring Ludacris and an old-school R&B/Soul jam “Die In Your Arms” - which samples The King Of Pop’s “We Got A Good Thing Going” from Jackson’s sophomore record Ben.
Another highlights including “Right There”, in which Bieber spits the lyrics in a Drake’s rapping/singing style, who’s also featured on the track. “Catching Feelings” might bring you back to 00’s R&B songs and the Nicki Minaj-featured “Beauty And A Beat” could easily be another smash.
Favorite tracks: “As Long As You Love Me” (feat. Big Sean), “Right There” (feat. Drake), “Boyfriend”, “Out Of Town Girl”
While “Payphone” is still topping various charts all around the world, the 2nd single lifted from Overexposed has already been confirmed. The reggae-tinged “One More Night” is probably the closest thing to their signature Funk/Alternative sound we’ve heard so far ever since “Moves Like Jagger”.
Sebenernya rada ragu mau nulis post ini soalnya bisi terlalu gimana gitu. Jadi ya hmm oke.
Setujukah saya Lady Gaga datang ke Indonesia? Sebenernya ya ga ngaruh juga sih dia mau dateng ya sok weh, dia engga juga ya udah ga ngaruh sih, da emg ga mau nonton hahaha. Saya suka beberapa lagunya Gaga, cuma kalo emang masalah lirik + penampilan, dalam satu sisi dia emang unik dan berani tampil beda, tapi dalam sisi lain itu “agak” berlebihan, maksa, dan terlalu kontroversial.
Seperti yang kita tahu, *** heboh beud parah ngelarang ni orang ke Indonesia. Pas saya baca2 artikelnya, kurang lebih alesan yang dipake ada 3: 1. Terlalu seksi 2. Berhubungan sama syetan / illuminati 3. lirik-liriknya Gaga banyak yang mendukung lesbianism/gay
Oke, pertama: 1. Terlalu seksi.
Kalo ini sih lebih ke perbedaan sudut pandang “seksi” itu seperti apa. Kalo menurut saya sih, iya sih emang si Gaga suka pamer-pamer badan, tapi da kalo menurut saya sih dia pake kostum mini itu lebih ke arah “seni” / “artistik” menurut Gaga (sebenernya menurut saya sih tetep sangat tidak “artistik”, lebih ke “freak” hahaha), soalnya walaupun bajunya mini tapi gayanya biasa aja, engga kaya penyanyi dangdut Indonesia yang kalo pake baju mini tuh tujuannya untuk memunculkan hawa nafsu pria. Ok jadi nomer satu lewat.
2. Berhubungan sama syetan / illuminati.
Saya sering baca-baca komentar yang percaya banget kalo artis-artis terkenal kaya Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Jay-Z, Beyonce, Nicki Minaj, Kanye West, Justin Bieber, Katy Perry dll itu penganut Illuminati. Mengapa? Karena mereka itu terkenal. Semakin terkenal artis, semakin banyak pembenci, semakin banyak gosip-gosip tidak sedap mengenai mereka. Emang ada bukti kalo mereka penganut Illuminati? Cuma gara-gara banyak simbol-simbol aneh di video-video mereka? Illuminati itu gerakan yang sembunyi-sembunyi hey, kalo udah pasang-pasang simbol di video mereka itu namanya terang-terangan. Trus banyak juga yang bilang gara-gara tarian-tarian mereka yang suka kaya nutupin mata sebelah, ini lah itu lah dkk. Kalo pake logika, emang yang bikin koreografinya si artis itu sendiri? Mereka juga punya koreografer hey, kenapa bukan koreografernya aja yang dituduh penganut Illuminati? Trus ada yang bilang gara-gara, lagu-lagunya mereka kalo diputer kebalik bakal ada kata-kata Lucifer dkk. Itu supermaksa. Semua lagu kalo diputer terbalik nya pasti jadi aneh atuhlah, bisa jadi mirip kata ini, kata itu dll. Dan kalian pikir yang nyiptain lagu itu mereka sendiri? Ya engga lah mereka juga punya penulis lagu sendiri juga kali. Dan juga kalo misalnya mereka pake baju yang ada simbol-simbol anehnya, kalian pikir si artis ngejahit baju-bajunya sendiri? Setau saya rata-rata kostum-kostum yang mereka pake itu sebelumnya udah pernah ditampilkan di sebuah fashion show dulu baru kemudian dipilih-pilih. Trus kalo misalnya di videonya ada simbol-simbol aneh, pernah denger yang namanya sutradara sama video editor? Yang bikin konsep music video itu ya si sutradara, kalo sama artisnya setuju ya diambil, kalo engga ya engga. Cing atuh nya plis pisan ini mah. Oke next. (apalagi Beyonce, Beyonce itu anak gereja ya tolong, tiap sebelum konser pasti berdoa dulu bareng-bareng, bahkan pas konsernya aja dia selalu nyanyi lagu Ave Maria, dia juga pernah rilis album natal bareng Destiny’s Child - masih aja, gosip Illuminati beredar, sampe-sampe pas anaknya Beyonce lahir - Blue Ivy Carter - beberapa jam kemudian di Yahoo! langsung ada headline “Bayi Beyonce adalah Titisan Setan”. CING ATUH NYA PAKE OTAK ATUH MARANEH TEH. Bayi tuh kalo baru lahir dimana-mana suci, jadi baik buruknya mah ya gimana si lingkungan “mendidik” bayi tersebut. PIKIR! Oke wassalam)
3. Masalah lesbi/gay.
Nah kalo ini baru bener saya juga engga setuju hahahaha. Walaupun sebenernya kalo ditelusuri sih ya ini mah ada hubungannya juga bahwa Lady Gaga itu dateng dari budaya barat yang menganut liberalism, yang setau saya juga baru-baru ini memperbolehkan perkawinan sesama jenis. Jadi sih sebenernya itu masalahnya lebih ke perbedaan budaya aja, kita menganut budaya timur, si eta budaya barat, jadi ya tabrakan. Dan kalo saya personally sih, saya dengerin lagu cuma gara-gara enak aja didenger. Kalo masalah lirik sih ya kurang peduli juga da engga ngaruh sama sekali ke kehidupan sehari-hari (oke kecuali Justin Bieber yang “That Should Be Me”, soalnya waktu itu jaman-jamannya galau pas SMA trus liriknya tuh dapet banget deh sumpah hahahahahaha), jadi itu mah balik lagi ke kita sendiri sih. Yang namanya globalisasi itu, budaya pasti bakal menyebar kemana-mana. Budaya timur masuk ke barat, begitu pula sebaliknya. Jadi itu mah gimana kitanya aja nerimanya positifnya atau negatifnya.
Trus kalo masalah *** ngelarang Lady Gaga, ya saya sih engga masalah da engga ngaruh juga dia mau dateng mau engga. Tapi kalaupun dilarang, kenapa engga dari dulu aja sih sebelum tiketnya dijual. Lah sekarang pas tiketnya udah sold out 40,000 tiket, trus tinggal beberapa hari lagi si Gaga nyampe di Indo, langsung pada rariweuh. Coba kalo “riweuh”nya udah dari bulan-bulan lalu, mungkin aja insyaallah sekarang udah bisa selesai masalahnya. Lah, ini mah mendadak gini. Trus saya liat di Jakarta sampe unjuk rasa segala nolak Gaga (gatau dari pihak mana) dan mereka membawa anak-anak kecil ikutan demo. Perlu banget ya demo? Perlu banget ya ngegunain anak-anak kecil buat demo? Emang si anak-anak itu tau Lady Gaga kaya begimana? Plis deh, malu-maluin tau ga sampe masuk berita di Inggris.
Jadi ya, itu “aja” sih pendapat saya mengenai masalah Gaga ini. Semuanya tergantung pemikiran masing-masing. Kalau Lady Gaga gagal ke Indo, yaudah sih sabar aja ya fans-fansnya jangan pada riweuh ya, *** aja udah riweuh apalagi elu semua yang 40,000 orang udah ancur aja tuh Jakarta kalo pada demo hahaha. Kalau Lady Gaga jadi ke Indo, ya selamat ya soalnya temen saya ada yang ngefans tuh beberapa hahaha, trus hati-hati kalo mau jalan-jalan di Jakarta bisi celaka.
OKE SELAMAT TIDUR DAN SELAMAT LANJUT LITERASI VISUAL, KONSTRUK DAN NIRMANA. SALAM DKV 2011.
Chris Brown readies 2nd Pop single from Fortune, the David Guetta-produced track “Don’t Wake Me Up”. The song starts off smoothly with a guitar riff before slowly transforms into a Dance anthem. Fortune arrives in stores July 3rd.
Apparently, a “Sweet Love” isn’t enough for Chris Brown. Following the huge success of “Look At Me Now” last year which led him to some Grammy nods, Breezy decides to go back to the hood with a club banger “Till I Die”, features two of the hottest newcomers in Hip-Hop, Big Sean and Wiz Khalifa.
Unfortunately, “Till I Die” doesn’t really exceed the expectation most of us had. It’s pretty different than any other Hip-Hop tracks out there, but overall it’s just bland. Plus, it kinda sounds more like a Big Sean’s track rather than Chris’s himself. Nevermind, that’s just my opinion for now. I didn’t like “Look At Me Now” at first either, but it ended up as my top song of 2011. Who knows, maybe this one is a grower too?
Another R&B crooner Trey Songz is currently preparing his 5th album Chapter V after the success of the Inevitable EP. The first single, “Heart Attack” is a midtempo song with broken-hearted Trey sings "It’s killing me, swear I never cried so much. Cause I never knew love would hurt this f-kin’ bad. The worst pain that I ever had".
Aside from Trey’s usual dramatic singing style with hell of vibratos, what’s so surprising about this song that it’s actually not about sex, a theme that Trey has been bringing to the table since his sophomore record. And unlike his other songs, this song contains some electropop elements and is definitely poppier compared to his previous ballads, especially the choruses.
Maybe, Trey is gonna be the one who’ll bring R&B back to the top?
The ladies man Chris Brown is ready to slow it down for the girls with the first R&B cut off Fortune, “Sweet Love”. The sexy slow jam features Brown singing over a gentle drum beat "Oh baby let’s get naked, just so we can make sweet love. All these sensation, got me going crazy".
As much as I adore this song’s production, however, it’s really sickening me out that male R&B singers nowadays have nothing to sing about, but sex, drugs and girls. I mean, really? Chris please, leave all that stuff to Trey Songz cause I know you’re better than that.
Nevermind, still love this song so much and hopefully it’s gonna be another huge hit for Chris. Peace out.
After “Moves Like Jagger” successfully conquering the airwaves back in 2011, Maroon 5 is ready with their new single, “Payphone” which has just been premiered minutes ago on the Hot 30 Countdown. The Wiz Khalifa-collaboration still manages to show Maroon 5’s classic sound throughout the choruses while borrowing some current Urban/Pop elements that might remind you of Gym Class Heroes’s latest hit “Ass Back Home” and Bruno Mars’s signature “Just The Way You Are”. Wiz Khalifa doesn’t disappoint as well as he delivers a great verse during the breakdown.
The album Overexposed arrives in stores June 26 and this song will go immediately on iTunes after the band performs on The Voice tonight. So, do you think “Payphone” is gonna be your summer jam?
After the success she got with her debut, Pink Friday, Nicki Minaj continues to surprise us with the follow-up Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded, a stupid title that might confuse people thinking it’s a re-release of the first one.
Nicki first performed “Roman Holiday” - the first track off the album - live at the 54th Annual Grammy Awards Ceremony which later gained so much controversies following its exorcism theme. However, it doesn’t change the fact that it is still a great album opener. Minaj continues spitting the rhymes in the HitBoys-produced “I Am Your Leader” - a mid-tempo Hip-Hop track with ceremonial-esque hook “i am your leader, yes i am your leader, you not a believer, suck a big ——”. Nicki slows it down a little bit in “Beez In A Trap”, a nice rap track which Nicki reported to have shot the video. Finally, Nicki steps up her game in “Roman Reloaded” - a collabo with mentor Lil’ Wayne, which was supposed to be the 2nd single, until it flopped and replaced with a more favourable Chris Brown collabo “Right By My Side”, where Nicki goes all the way singing over a Pop/R&B beat which sounds like what Jordin Sparks or Rihanna would sing. Also, “Champion” a collaboration with fellow rappers Drake, Nas & Young Jeezy could be on of the year’s hottest Hip-Hop anthems. The chorus is a little bit let down though considering it contains one the album’s hottest beats. And of course, Jeezy ruins the song.
"Starships" - the first Pop single from the album might remind you of one of those Katy Perry’s and Jessie J’s songs at the beginning until it suddenly transforms into a club anthem during the chorus. "Pound The Alarm" is already pretty well-known all over the web as it’s a fan favorite and because of its heavy Trance/House beats, I always think of the Calvin Harris-produced "Where Have You Been" from Rihanna’s latest album whenever I listen to this song. Easily a certified hit. "Whip It" is a dancehall-influenced track which is definitely one of my favorites from the album as well as "Gun Shot" which contains a slower R&B/Reggae-ish influence with her Rasta accent and a little help from Beenie Man. I’m hoping that they would release the later as a single. I definitely love it more than any other midtempos from the album. "Marilyn Monroe" - another fan favorite track is a nice Pop slow jam with catchy choruses - think of Kelly Clarkson’s "Already Gone" with weaker vocals.
What do you think of the album personally? Will Nicki reach Rihanna’s level of success with this new Poppier sound?