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18 of 21 found the following review helpful:
Fine R&B Album Sep 05, 2009
By Michael Brent Faulkner, Jr.
Trey Songz has never received his just due. Arriving at a time where other male R&B artists were blowing up with reasonable or great success (Chris Brown most notably), it seemed as if Trey Songz's fine I Gotta Make It went unnoticed. This is most sad as Trey Songz has an exceptional, well-nuanced voice that competes with the best of them. I GOTTA MAKE IT was a good, new/old-timey urban album with solid production and overall strong songwriting. It debuted at #20 on the Billboard Album Charts and tanked. 2007's Trey Day showcased a better showing (#11, 73,000 copies), though even the incredibly commercial "Can't Help But Wait" couldn't propel the singer to gold sales. Hopefully 2009's great and well produced Ready will help to propel a talent such as Trey Songz to the level of commercial success he should have already been receiving. If quality were the only indicator and not economy, Trey Songz could easily have a platinum album with this excellent third showing, arguably his best.
The album opens up with "Panty Dropper (Intro)", which prepares the listener to what ends up being Songz's most sensual, sexualized album. Despite this theme, Trey never goes over the edge like say R. Kelly at his most sensual, which means that the album is generally in good taste even though it is risque subject matter. "Neighbor's Know My Name" is an excellent first song - sensual, urban in sound, and well written. It's a song that R. Kelly would've taken to the next level (in a more twisted way that is) and Trey Songz does a phenomenal job with it. Catchy, kinky, and unrequited perfection describe "Neighbors Know My Name". Even better is the proceeding "I Invented Sex", which by title alone sounds like it should be the dirtiest, horniest song of the album. In fact, it turns out to be deceptive and is much more tame than its 'shock value' title. "I Invented Sex" turns out to be a catchy, hip-hop leaning urban song that is more insinuative than explicitly detailing 'the deed'. Again, it is a great production showcase and vocal performance.
I wasn't initially a fan of "I Need A Girl" when I first heard it on the radio; I thought that perhaps Trey Songz had already sailed the 'adult-contemporary R&B' boat with his great, understated "Can't Help But Wait" (also produced by Stargate) from TREY DAY. However, since purchasing READY, I can't stop listening to it! It should appeal to a more mature R&B crowd that don't care to hear about merely 'bumping and grinding'. "One Love" incorporates more great production, intact with sick drum programming, and 'ill' sounding electric guitar, and sensitive harmonious piano. Again, "One Love" is above average by all means and sets quite the standard for READY. "Does He Do It" similarly finds Songz at his best, supported by nothing less than top-notch production by Sean Garrett.
"Say Aah" featuring Fabulous (Loso) is one of the catchiest of the entire album. The production is high quality, Trey sounds among his best, filled with swagger, and Loso's verse is one of the best I've heard from him in a while. "Say Aah" is 'poppin', for lack of a better word. The unique "LOL :-)" is nothing less than fun to listen to, with appearances from rising rapper Gucci Mane and Soulja Boy Tell 'Em. "Ready To Make Love" serves as the 'intro-lude' for the souped up "Jupiter Love", another fine track finding Songz at his most sensual ever.
"Be Where You Are" is solid, but one of my least favorites. With that said, it isn't mere filler; there is no filler on this album. "Successful" featuring rising rapper Drake for the second time of the album (he also appears on "I Invented Sex") is one of the top tracks. The production is mysterious and cool at the same time while Trey's restrained vocals are exceptional here. Drake's verses are top-notch as always, building even more buzz about his debut album. "Black Roses" is another production showcase with its "huge" drums. No, it isn't the best of the album, but it is still a great song, which is key. "Love Lost", similar represents itself well. "Hollalude" serves as an intro-lude to the solid, though not earth-shattering "Holla If You Need Me". The album closes, solidly, though not revolutionarily with "Yo Side of the Bed". Again, even the 'second-rate' songs are solid at least, and most are above average.
There is very little to quibble about with READY. I think it Songz's best set of songs to date. Here, his swagger is really captivating in a way that it hasn't been before. 4 stars, easily.
A Grammy nomination for best contemporary R&B album would be nice.
3 of 3 found the following review helpful:
Damn near classic... Oct 10, 2009
From a male's perspective, I can say that I truly enjoy this CD and Trey Songz is incredibly talented. He has a very distinctive voice, and I wouldn't be surprised to see him become an R&B icon through the years. This CD, is hands down one of the top R&B albums of the year, yet it does fall short in achieving Trey's true potential.
In my opinion the thing that holds this album back is probably the lack of creative control that Trey has in the process. Time and time again we see talented artists signed to major record labels and the net product is watered down formula music that sadly tries to re-create the magic or purity of music from back in the day. People have become bored with music hence the miserable album sales and all the illegal bootlegging, however amidst all this "machine" music Trey's talent overrides the lackluster influence from whack A&Rs and executives in the music business...yeah he's that good. I find it hard to imagine that any music executive could prompt or cause Trey to do the things he did with each song, I'd imagine them telling him to simply go sing the song and to hit the right notes, yet Trey went into the booth and PERFORMED these songs clearly he has studied and perfected his craft hence he is "Ready".
From the start to finish the CD contains solid tracks all the way through, and there is something on there for everybody. Personally I find it hard to imagine that LOL:) is on the same album with "Black Roses" and "Love Lost" (the lack of creative influence). Nonetheless, Trey doesn't disappoint and delivers strong vocals on each track. My personal favorites include: "Be where you are", "Black Roses", and "Love Lost". The track "Be Where you are" has the potential to make him appeal to other audiences as it shows his versatility. "Love Lost" uses Michael Jackson's "Human Nature" sample but not in a manner that that is too too obvious, and this is probably the best song on the album as it shows true growth in vocal abilities and content. I don't want to downplay any other song on the album because honestly each track (including the interludes) are good even LOL:) has its moments with it's silly catchiness.
Overall, this CD does show promise for Trey in the future. I don't think he's truly found his niche yet but he does deliver on the more mature sounding R&B better than the silliness of LOL:) or the R.Kelly like sexually motivated tracks,yet we all know the mature sound doesn't exactly sell as well as the contemporary crap. I hope he has positive figures guiding him because honestly the dude seems lost and awkward at times (not on the album but in general) because he has so much talent it'll be a shame that it goes to waste. Lastly, the singles picked to promote the album were all terrible choices!
12 of 16 found the following review helpful:
3-1/2 stars -- Not a classic like everyone says but it's still good Jan 03, 2010
By Anthony Rupert
"shut up, Shut Up, SHUT UP!!!"
Trey Songz is one of those artists that I was surprised had actual albums -- not that he isn't good, but usually male R&B crooners that spend most of their early career singing the choruses to rap songs don't actually get to release any of their own stuff (Rell, anyone?). I always planned on listening to some of Trey's albums but I never got around to it until recently, and now I picked up his latest album, Ready.
There are a lot of good songs to find on here, like "I Need a Girl", "I Invented Sex" and "Successful" (although as usual, Drake sounds like he's talking rather than rapping). "Yo Side of the Bed" (which isn't what you might think it's about; more on that in a minute) is pretty decent too. In fact, very few songs are fast-forwardable, so why only 3-1/2 stars? Well, it's like what my brother asked when he reviewed Silk's album Tonight: how many ways can you say "freak me, baby"? Yeah, I'm sure most of the ladies have no complaints, but come on, man; you have a good voice; change up the subject matter a bit!
And a few songs like that are skippable. "Scratchin' Me Up" (one of the three tracks on the deluxe edition) doesn't feel right somehow, and "Does He Do It" suffers from a repetitive and unimaginative chorus. "Say Aah" is a mindless club track, and "LOL :)" never should have happened. Ready is still a solid album; your best bet, though, is to play it when you and your partner want some "special" time.
2 of 2 found the following review helpful:
Not safe for kids - Otherwise AWESOME Sep 10, 2009
By K. Grady
This is the best CD I've purchased in a long time. I took a road trip over the Labor Day weekend and this was a wonderful CD to travel to.
I only have one issue... Some of the content is very, very sensual (which i really liked) but too much for the 13 year old that I had in the car wtih me. I had to skip those songs. This is the reason that i gave it 4 instead of 5 stars.
Otherwise, this is a very solid CD. With the exception of a few more hip hop based songs, this is the PERFECT music for a romantic evening.
While Trey is a very talented artist, it is easy to tell who his influences are. Ready to Make Love - sounds a lot like Maxwell. Yo Side of the Bed - has Prince written all over it. But both are very beautiful pieces. On a couple of the tracks, you could easily mistake him for R Kelly (Hollalude).
My favorites are
Neighbors Know My Name - 4/5 stars
One Love - 4/5 stars
Ready to Make Love 5/5 stars (Maxwell inspired)
Jupiter Love 4/5 stars
Holla If You Need Me - 5/5 stars (My FAVORITE)
Yo side of the Bed 5/5 Stars (MY FAVORITE -BEAUTIFUL!!!!)
6 of 8 found the following review helpful:
Voice of an ANGEL... Sep 01, 2009
By V. Johnson
This, my friends, is the best purchase I've made all year. Trey's creative energy is nothing short of magic. He breathes life back into the music industry with every note. I can listen to this entire compilation, start to finish, without skipping any tracks - and I consider myself very much a musical snob. If you don't purchase this album, you're missing out. Please support a legend in the making... Thanks for awakening every single one of my senses with this piece of work Mr. Songz. You, are a genius.
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