Review Summary: She forgot to make this one interesting.
Rihanna's seventh album is titled Unapologetic
, which usually describes someone who isn't afraid to cause a little chaos. It would certainly seem that way, as even after the incident with Chris Brown beating her to a bloody pulp, she still indulges in a bit of time with ex-boyfriend and admitted woman beater Chris Brown. And aside from a duet with Brown on her latest album, which comes off as tasteless and totally vomit-inducing, there really isn't any proof of her being, um, unapologetic. In fact, she has a lot to apologize for with album.
Riri's latest way to promote her latest album was a tour plane, and journalists have made no effort to hide the fact that the whole thing was poorly organized. Among the many problems that plagued the tour was lack of food or any access to what everyone usually goes to the Carribean for- the beach. Now while this may not have anything to do with the album, it certainly is telling that the idea of someone making 7 albums in 7 years is just plain ridiculous, and needs to take at least a year off to either get her s--t together, or maybe take some time to, you know, actually plan things properly. And Unapologetic
, is a testament to her idea to just keep going with no rest, that, would in theory sound good, instead just has us wondering about her mental state, especially if it drives her to hang around with Chris Brown.
That's not even the most of the problems, however. The big problem with this album is that it suffers from a general lack of interestingness. The songs may be catchy, but there isn't any hooks. Even the horribly depressing Rated R
album had the decency to give us "Rude Boy", and Loud
and Talk That Talk
were filled with hook-filled catchy club anthems like "What's My Name" and "We Found Love". The opening track on this album, "Phresh Out Da Runway", just sounds like she's messing around with a synthesizer and a hip hop beat and sounds totally boring as a result, and its chorus, which seems to repeat the title a minimum of 9, 836, 589, 076 times, will likely drive you to insanity. Songs that should be club hits like "Pour it Up" and "Jump" (the latter of which samples a lyric from Ginuwine's 1996 hit "Pony"), come off as boring and depressing. Then we have her second duet with Eminem, "Numb", which, um, let's just say is certainly no "Love the Way You Lie". Eminem's totally pointless appearance is filled with painful rhymes (including this lovely line: "Homie can you show me where the gosh darn bath salts are/
Cause I'm sick of sniffing asphalt"
), and the trademark repetitive chorus doesn't help matters either. Its also telling when the first single she releases is a boring and soulless ballad "Diamonds", and that's only just the first single.
And then there's the tasteless duet, "Nobody's Business", featuring Chris Brown. The beat is nice enough but it's pretty disturbing to hear Chris sing about how he wants to "touch her" (to do what, beat her up again?), and to hear that they're "happy together". Have fun being beat up again, RiRi. In addition, one could only wonder if the original line in "Love Without Tragedy", "What is love without tragedy?
", was "Who am I without Chris Brown?". The soulless and depressing ballad seems to be obsessed with RiRi trying to convince everyone that no relationship is perfect. And I guess she is right in hat regard, but it's a little funny to hear coming from her.
Just about the only song I can recommend from this album is "No Love Allowed". The song bears a chord progression similar to a late Michael Jackson track and is a nice, breezy reggae song. It's the only song that sounds like she even tried to make good, and that chord progression I'll stick in your head. Otherwise, I can't say I can tell what went wrong with Unapologetic
, or what went most wrong, or even if it's because she seems to just keep going with no rest. Either way, my advice to Fenty's manager is this: stop making her make an album every year. And my advice to Rihanna: please, go away for a while. Get your s--t together. Stop hanging around Chris Brown, either way, we won't forget you, because even songs like "Russian Roulette" get played on top 40 radio regularly. We won't forgive you for this album, however.