Monday, August 28, 2006

Album Review: Beyonce - B'Day

Release Date: September 5, 2006
Record Label: Columbia Records


Beyonce is for sure a man's heaven. She's drop-dead gorgeous. She shakes her booty. Just to make us whine, she is a rockstar and actor. A good one (rockstar) too. All of her singles off her debut album Dangerously In Love, kept her name printed on the Billboards. Most notably "Crazy In Love", which is one of the best pop songs of all time. But overall Dangerously In Love was lackluster if you drop off all the singles. So can Ms. Knowles hold her ground, on B'Day, her second solo album?

"Deja Vu" the first single off B'Day, finds Beyonce and Jay-Z together again (Jay-Z joined Beyonce for "Crazy In Love"), for hopefully another summer success. Success did come, but the quality of the two dropped drastically. "Deja Vu" just sounds like another average radio song. With a funky bassline and horns that latch onto Beyonce's every word in the chorus, you're left with something, but not everything. "Ring The Alarm" the brand new second single has Beyonce screaming, sort of. She is yelling more than she ever has, if she ever has, but she's not screaming. There is energy, but not enough. Plus if you just go and listen to the :30 sample on iTunes, you know the whole song.

"Get Me Bodied" has a nice playground melody, along with a chorus that has the girls jump roping at the corner clapping. B oversings the song a bit. A good melody is there. Beyonce is making me think I have a chance on "Suga Mama". 'Sit on mama lap' and 'I want, gots to be your suga mama' are really just poison to a man's mind. She oversings again.

The highlight of the album "Irreplaceable" is a lollipop acoustic ballad. Leaning heavily on corny, "Irreplaceable" has Beyonce talking trash about some guy. Telling him 'Hurry up, before your taxi leaves' and 'I could have another you in a minute, in fact he'll be here in a minute'. Wow. Beyonce's swagger is completely on in the track. She nails every note perfect, including a beautiful falsetto.

Unfortunately, some filler really holds back the album. "Upgrade U" has maybe the worst Jay-Z performance ever. He lazily mumbles, unenthusiastic "stuff". Thats Hova? "Green Light" is just plain mediocre. "Resentment" is the cliche slow finisher, where Beyonce thinks it's best if she oversings again.

Beyonce doesn't have any songs that are close to any of her singles from the first album, bar "Irreplaceable". "Irreplaceable" is really the only great song. B'Day is just a tad more solid than Dangerously In Love, mainly because it's 5 songs shorter. So think of B'Day as the not as long Dangerously In Love.

Stream "Deja Vu" Video

Stream "Ring The Alarm" Video


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