Chris Brown wasted no time putting out his new release Fortune, a little over a year since his ‘comeback’ album, F.A.M.E. Chris continues his trend of being a Pop-R & B-Rapper, the key to the success on his R & B album of the year Grammy earlier this year. That only means he’s leaving a lot more to be desired of him for long-time listeners who are still looking for Brown to hit a level of what can best be described as R & B maturity.
Chris Brown finds himself in a similar position as the last release, this time dealing with public scrutiny over his alleged involvement in a club brawl in NYC. Where F.A.M.E. was able to go above and beyond to earn the respect of new fans, Fortune falls short. True to the saying, seems Fortune just comes with F.A.M.E., providing nothing to stamp it as it’s own major body of work. In fact, many of the songs sound like they just missed the cut for F.A.M.E. Can’t knock him for giving the people what they want I guess.
Rapping Chris and Pop aside, the album is good. That’s why I start the album towards the end of track 4, “Mirage.” The song features Nas, with the only respectable Rap verse on the album, although Wiz Khalifa, Big Sean and Brown all try and fall short on the album’s previous track, “Til I Die.” Nas provides a perfect beginning for where the album should begin.
The next 8 tracks are Brown at his best, singing tunes of love, sex, pain and relationship squabbles. Almost no fist pumping. Almost no spitting bars trying to compete with your favorite rapper, though Kevin McCall makes his guest appearance on “Strip.” It’s just a lot more genuine for Brown. A lot like he was able to do successfully on Graffiti.
The album ends with “Trumpet Lights,” another Pop-infused thrill ride. Not my cup of tea, as the thrill for me comes in tracks like “Don’t Judge Me” and “2012.”
The album isn’t his best work, but with the state of R & B, I won’t be surprised if he’s nominated for the year’s Best R & B album at next year’s Grammys. Won’t even be surprised if he wins. Doesn’t take away the fact that this album is only worth a PAR on our rating scale.
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