Album: Blurred Lines
Singer: Robin Thicke
Music: Star Trak/ Interscope
Price: $15.68 (Amazon.com)
Theres something about Robin Thicke. As a long-haired,dreamy-eyed 20-something soul singer,Thicke first caught our attention with his debut single When I get you alone (2002),which was a sort of disco rendition of Beethovens Fifth Symphony. The combination of his smooth voice,the pop beats and the iconic four-note opening motif made quite an impression,not to forget his hippie looks and the bicycle stunts across NYC in the official music video.
Now,with his sixth studio album Blurred Lines,Thicke has ventured out of his forte R&B/soul and stepped into mainstream pop. This collection of 11 tracks,peppered with Thickes cheeky innuendos and guileless pillow talk,makes for a fast and pleasurable listening experience.
The album begins with the title track Blurred lines,the bootylicious video of which was released a few weeks ago (it has Thicke dancing with a bunch of leggy lasses). With producer Pharell Williams,Thicke brings minimalist,electro-funk beat to the number as he croons in his silky voice,OK now he was close,tried to domesticate you/ But youre an animal,baby its in your nature/ Just let me liberate you.
While the next track,Take it easy on me,is an electronic thump number produced by Timbaland,Oooh la la is Thickes familiar territory an 80s-inspired sexed-up song,coupled with his high-pitched croon (à la Michael Jackson,we suspect).
Get in my way is a fast-paced number waiting to be made into a workout video (preferably Zumba) as Thicke croons,Aint nobody gonna get in my way/ Im gonna make it no matter what you say. The following track,Feel good,is produced by Will.i.am. It starts slowly,but builds up to a smart EDM number with Thicke asking innocently,If I ran all out of money/ Would you pay for me? Go stupid 4 U,a delicious acoustic-guitar track (surprisingly also produced by Will.i.am),comes like a breath of fresh air to help you catch,well,your breath,after all those dance tracks on the album.
While For the rest of my life is a lovey-dovey R&B ballad with slow-dance potential,Top of the world is a rags-to-riches story of a successful but lonely muse. The music matches the good-life feel of the lyrics (we were transported to the glossy,airbrushed world of Gossip Girl and 90210) with the smooth trombone and saxophone adding that languid feeling to the song. The good life carries the tale forward,but is more triumphant in nature,as Thicke sings,The good life,I know I made it, to piano and guitar riffs.
Thicke represents that errant,cheeky,yet lovable (older) guy who never leaves the house without his swag. He is a lot of things,but Blurred Lines will catch you unawares simply because of its honest cheekiness and readiness to let you have a good time.