Review Summary: Missed opportunity.
Katy B is in a improbable situation. She has a very good voice that has presence, power and is recognizable. She also writes or co-writes her own material. The tracks are also well produced, and most of them would work well in the dance floor. And yet, Honey
is a boring fest. What happened here" Part of the answer might lie in the fact she also brought in a lot
of people to collaborate in her record. Every song in here has a feature, either in vocals, songwriting or production, and neither of such artists seem to bring anything exciting or unique to the table. Another part of the answer is that Katy B sounds like a feature in her own songs, -- actually she is
a feature in the song "Turn The Music Louder(Rumble)" by KDA -- and like most of the EDM vocal numbers, the vocals seems like just anonymous companion pieces, something you put there to make the track more human and effervescent, but nothing more. And after thirteen songs with the same voice, it gets tiring. Finally, another part of the problem might lie in the fact that, despite the songs here being well produced, the production is uncreative and lifeless. Add a bit of dubstep here, a bit of DnB there, a bit of garage over there and we got an album. The album's two opening tracks are so unexpectedly lethargic that you think perhaps the aforementioned "Turn The Music Louder" was not meant to be a part of this album. Not even the more aggressive grime cut "Lose Your Head" gives the album a little pump. Almost everything here looks famishing in its delivery.
We have to wait until the triad "Turn The Music Louder(Rumble)"-"Dark Delirium"-"Water Rising" (that is, until track nine) to reach the album's most interesting segment. The first has an infectious house beat with a catchy chorus, and features an energetic Katy having some fun, for a change. Sadly, to keep dragging the record down, this is not even the best version of the song, the one featuring Tinie Tempah. The other two songs two fall in line with the rest of the album's lack of pulse, but at least the instrumentals are more interesting and mesh better with Katy's vocal delivery, and turn out to be the best tracks in here. I am not familiar with her previous material, but the final impression from this collection of songs is very negative. It is a shame because her voice seems modeled by soul and RnB influences and would work well in a much flexible and expressive genre. In here her voice appears restrained and limited by the precision and mechanical nature of electronic music. As it is, if I wanted songs in the context of EDM music, I would rather listen to Zero 7, Rudimental, Disclosure or even Ellie Goulding. Honey
is not properly a bad album, it is just a very boring one. Pick any given track and play it in a club, it would probably do well. Just like any track from any another artist. Completely unremarkable.