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    Rihanna

    good girl gone bad

    Good Girl Gone Bad 4 ( 2007 )
    Umbrella / Push Up On Me / Don't Stop The Music / Breakin Dishes / Shut Up And Drive / Hate That I Love You / Say It / Sell Me Candy / Lemme Get That / Rehab / Question Existing / Good Girl Gone Bad

    She was born in Barbados and has released three albums in three years, which is an impressive feat. She claims her influences are Alicia Keys, Beyoncé Knowles and her Caribbean roots. Come her third album 'Good Girl Gone Bad' she's as pop as pop gets in 2007, with all that implies. Unlike Alicia Keys or Nelly Furtado, let's say, it's impossible to imagine a Rihanna album without a slew of guest artists, engineers musicians and producers. Undoutedly talented as a performer, Rihanna is a singer/dancer, rather than singer/songwriter. The trouble I have personally, is I don't like this kind of emotionally vapid r&b music. I don't like the sheer lack of artistry the album presents. Number one in the singles charts for an astonishing 10 weeks was lead cut, 'Umbrella'. Ah, sorry, that should of course be 'Umbrella-ella-ella-ay-ay-ay-ay'. Silly me. Other 'highlights', such as they are, include the rock r&b of the almost enjoyable 'Shut Up And Drive'. We've got the 80s flavoured 'Push Up On Me', seems every pop album these days needs to make a nod to the 80s. Well, it's in fashion apparently.

    This albums twelve tracks pass by in fifty minutes or so, something to do excerzise to, to put on when you're going out on a Saturday night. Well, I say these things but if you're older than around twenty I hope you're not really listening to a Rihanna album. It's party music aimed squarely at the teen market where image and music become intertwined and you seemingly can't have one without the other. Without seeing images of Rihanna then, the music becomes meaningless and without real purpose. I do like 'Rehab' which drops the beats and layers of production for a moment and opens instead with acoustic guitar. It's here on 'Rehab' where Rihanna comes closest to an artist like Nelly Furtado, yet even 'Rehab' seems somewhat like Rihanna punching above her weight. Take away the production then, the millions of dollars and the record label marketing department and all that's left is an ordinary singer/dancer who happens to look stunning. Quite convenient for a career in pop these days, that last aspect. I haven't really slated this album have I? I feel i've been quite polite, really. Must be losing my touch.

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    this page last updated 15/07/07


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