Going For What You Know

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Those familiar with these parts are well aware that I don’t take kindly to singers and rappers who stray too far away from the sound that made fans give a damn to begin with. Yeah, evolution is great, blah diddy pop blah blah. Sometimes it’s best for people to stick to what works for them, especially if they are supremely sucktastic when doing anything else. Some of the guilty parties can be found below. Now a few have seemingly learned their lessons, others not so much. Why won’t some folks just co-sign their truth already?

Let’s start this off on a good note and give a polite applause to Amerie. Notice I spelled her name as it was originally given to us. I will forever refuse to refer to ass “Ameriie” beyond this sentence.  I don’t know what spaceship happy hour she was at that gave her the genius idea to add another I to her name for the hell of it, but I hope she’s since been barred from the bar. Amerie has far worse offenses, though, starting with the direction of her music after Touch.

The last thing I read about her she was describing some music that sounded as if only the after hours crew in Sunnydale could truly appreciate it. If this song is any indication that she’s changed her mind, praise hip hop soul Jesus. “Every Time” isn’t necessarily amazing as a stand alone track, but it’s decent and the best I’ve heard from Amerie in a few years. More importantly, it’s close to the sound that made me a fan.

I wonder what changed her mind. Could’ve been Jhene Aiko? Did one of you Amerie stans hit her up on Twitter and asked, “Ay yo. You gon’ let this younger, equally Blasian looking girl take your mellow half-singing ass vibe like that?” If this indeed happened, please contact me so I can send you a celebratory bottle of hot sauce. I’ll send you some Louisiana Fish Fry if you actually get Amerie to make a whole album like All I Have again.

Frankly, I am not as in love with this as others are. That said, I agree that it’s the best song Lil’ Kim has released in a very long time. I would say probably haven’t heard anything this strong from Kim since her second or third nose. But being better than the trash you’ve presented to the public a great track not make. That said, “Keys To The City” is alright. I dig the beat, appreciate the fact that she’s actually trying to rap versus her God awful singing as well as the her featuring an artist I’ve actually heard of. Positive notes aside, what has happened to Kimberly Jones’ speech pattern? I’m going to keep asking this until someone explains it to me.

She sounds different. I have never heard of any cosmetic operations on a tongue, so that can’t be it. I need answers. Stat. Kim’s flow used to be so pristine. Not so much now. Her voice is off and the flow bites a few other rappers. I could go on about how laughable it is that she’s basically Kilo Barbie on the track, but I’m gonna let her make it. Well, on that.

This is inexcusable. Who is that white woman on the cover? Does she know that she’s not helping Kimberly escape the “Fuck wrong you?” focused questions about her face? This is exactly why I wrote that piece about her needing to address her surgery for Ebony.

By the way, on the subject of keys, whatever happened to her ass? Did she fall through that trap door I subscribed to her? I thought she was supposed to be a problem. Who called the locksmith? Don’t bother answering. Just be glad I’m even asking. Let’s just move on.

Wait, one more thing: “Ha. Ha. I win. You lose.” Alright, now we can go forward.

Oh, Toni. As an independent artist with notorious money troubles, I salute Toni Braxton for even having a video for her first new single despite it looking like its total cost was a plate of fried chicken thighs, greens, and Hawaiian bread. As for what matters most – the song itself – Toni sounds absolutely divine. I don’t love the song, but I don’t hate it either. It’s sort of like the dance remixes of her big ballads that she used to do back in the 1990s. So in that respect, she’s not technically doing anything too different. Then again, those songs were dance remixes not the main feature. Baby steps.

Sure, I’m boxing her in, but I just don’t want to see Toni Braxton dance. I want her to sing songs like “How Many Ways, ” Why Should I Care?” and “Love Shoulda Brought You Home.” I’ll even take “Sposed To Be” (Keri Hilson is fantastic in the background) or “Always.” And if she must go uptempo, my speed is more along the lines of the underrated “Take This Ring” or “He Wasn’t Man Enough.” If she wants to give the white gay kids “life,” good luck with that is all I have to say.

Besides, it could be worse.

Hello, worse. You know we’re fucked when Trina of all people is trying to go pop. Who in the pop techno hell does Trina think she is? Trina, you are “Nann Nigga,” “Pull Over,” “Hustlin’,” “What’s Your Fantasy (Remix),” “Look Back At It,” and “Red Bottoms.” Not…whatever this song is supposed to be. The Black gays are your bread and butter so I’m curious as to who has you thinking that the white ones are suddenly about to hop off Nicki Minaj’s “Starship” to get on your space bus.

This is the most cynical thing I’ve heard in a long time. I cannot picture Trina entering the booth and thinking, “Yeah, I’m loving this song.” If the opposite happened, I want to know what elixir she had Queen Grimhilde make her first.

I am so disappointed in her. She is supposed to make the songs I play after leaving West Hollywood when tired of techno assaulting my ear drums. Trina, you can stay on the moon with all this. To the rest of the reviewed: Thank you for at least trying to come back to Earth.


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