by Lisa Dalrymple
Go BeyoncÃ©, it’s your birthday. Indeed, BeyoncÃ© celebrated her 25th birthday in style with the release of her sophomore album, B-Day Sept. 5.
The album opens with the hit “Deja Vous,” which mixes big band sound with familiar R&B flavor. The melody in “Get Me Bodied” keeps the beat from getting too repetitive. The classic hip-hop sound parallels House of Pain’s “Jump Around.” “Suga Mama” has a funky 60s feel to it. It’s the perfect song for getting ready to go out with friends.
Although “Upgrade You” carries a deeper message than the first three songs, the music is boring and should end at three minutes instead four and a half.
Hey ladies, angry with your man? “Ring the Alarm” is perfect anger music. A powerful song, it reflects a rare moment of vulnerability in the usually unshakable BeyoncÃ©. “Kitty Kat” is just about as sickly sweet as the title implies. The catchy dance song “Freakum Dress” marches to the beat of a different drum, and is definitely hit material. “Greenlight” brings back the 70s and fuses it with salsa and classic R&B.
Despite beginning with a bang, the final two songs disappoint. Even with good writing, the pop sound of “Irreplaceable” comes off childish, and the gospel sound of “Resentment” gets old quickly. BeyoncÃ© speaks directly to fans at the end of the album, and introduces “Listen,” a song from her upcoming film “Dreamgirls.” The party ends with a fun, but perhaps lengthy, remix of “Get Me Bodied.”
Overall, the fusion of musical genres works for and against BeyoncÃ©. She reminds fans of the power of strong vocals however, and seems to be paving the way for the reinvention of R&B as we know it.