Friday, November 19, 2010

Loud [2010]

For her first few albums, Rihanna was very much a throw away pop princess. There's nothing wrong with that, i am a Britney fan after all, but Rihanna never seemed to really click with me and i never thought all that much about her outside of a few decent songs here and there. Once Rated R arrived in 2009, she finally delivered something worth my while and i fell in love with the album.
Loud follows a very similar pattern to Rated R. It's more cohesive when compared to her first few albums, it's fairly mid-tempo heavy with only a couple "club bangha" tracks, and it also offers a big serving of synths and electric guitar. In a way, Loud is the perfect sister album to Rated R. Rated R is the darker more urban sounding first half, Loud is the slightly lighter more dance/rock lite second part.


S&M 4/5
It sounds like the album could use a little intro to start things off, but it doesn't have one, it just goes straight into track #1. Not that i mind, the opening song is really hot. It's made for the clubs, and reminds me of a darker, sexier 'Only Girl'. It sounds like a good single, but i'm not sure how well the lyrics will go down on the radio.

What's My Name? 5/5
I absolutely love this song to death. The track is one complete hook from start to finish, the melody, the arrangement, it's perfect. This song features Drake.

Cheers [Drink To That] 3.5/5
This track samples Avril Lavigne's "I'm With You", i'm not sure if the song needed it really, the rest of the track without it sounds perfectly fine. It's a grower.

Fading 4/5
It's filler, but good filler. The electronic lite music and the chorus are very pretty.

Only Girl [In The World] 5/5
I know it's an odd word to describe a euro dance song, but this is really gorgeous. The chorus is so massive and epic, the video featuring Rihanna shouting off the mountain tops and jumping through the air is a perfect visual to go along with the vibe of this track. It's so vast and grand sounding, i love it.
California King Bed 3.5/5
I didn't like this when i first heard it, the verses are weak and it's my least favourite track on the album. It's grown on me over time though and i enjoy it now, the chorus is nicely sung. This is a big favourite among others listeners.

Man Down 5/5
The most interesting song vocally and production wise on the album. The chorus gets stuck in your head something crazy, and the Caribbean vibe of the music fits Rihanna's voice perfectly.

Raining Men 4/5
It comes across as filler, but it's good filler. I love the heavy low synths that come in during the chorus. It's the most ghetto track on the album. Queen of Rap, Nicki Minaj is featured on this.

Complicated 4/5
Some people think California King Bed is "THE" ballad off the album, but this is the one i prefer personally. I love how she sings the chorus.
Skin 5/5
Heavy synths, sexy vocals, slow pumping beat, it's the "G4L" off the album, but better. The song is really great from the start, but turns amazing once the electric guitar comes blasting in during the last section of the song. Gives me chills. My favourite track from the album and my favourite Rihanna song ever.

Love The Way You Like [Part II] 4/5
This is much better than the version Eminem released, and it's been given a soft rock make over that really suits Rihanna's voice. The chorus on this is one of the best ones i've ever heard on a pop song. This features a quick Eminem rap, not needed, but i still like him on it.


As great as Loud is, the album title is very misleading. There is nothing Loud about the record, it's a fairly low key sounding collection of songs, and the lead single [Only Girl] really shouldn't be used as a way to showcase what the entire album is like. If you're expecting Good Girl Gone Bad part 2, you'll be very disappointed. As i said before, Loud follows the same pattern as Rated R, so if her last album wasn't really your thing, then this will most likely bore you to tears. If you're like me though, and prefer Rihanna doing more melodic slower music with a few faster tracks thrown in, then you'll love Loud.

Rihanna continues to grow as an artist, and after a second offering from her that i've fallen in love with, i'm officially keeping her on my radar. Rated R is still a big favourite of mine, and i honestly didn't think she'd be able to top it, but she has with Loud. I think this album is perfect, and it's the best pop album of the year for me.

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