Review Of Janelle Monáe – Electric Lady
Janelle Monáe – Electric Lady‘Electric Lady’ is the second full length release from American artist Janelle Monáe and is the follow up to 2010’s ‘The ArchAndorid’. Although released back in November, it has become one of the must hear albums of the last year. Monáe’s exciting and futuristic take on R&B, soul and funk has created waves across the world and is constantly earmarked as one of the most forward thinking artists on the planet.‘Electric Lady’ is a delightful mixed bag with guest appearances from Solange, Erykah Badu and the legendary Prince. The first full track ‘Givin’ ‘Em What They Want’ is led by some sneaky guitar and Monáe’s soaring vocals with a bit of help from Prince as his falsetto allows Monáe to channel her inner entertainer.‘Q.U.E.E.N.’ brings the funk early on with a delightfully playful rhythm combined with a cool bassline and 80’s synths, as guest star Erykah Badu and Janelle make playful references to twerking throughout.The title track is the highlight of the record as it offers some of the most exciting song writing and production I’ve heard in years. The sci-fi influenced artist produces an exhilarating chorus by combining tight percussion and extra-terrestrial lyrics as the song soars to the stratosphere. The lyrics are appropriately ambitious as she tells the listener that “You got the looks the Gods agree they want to see” before she tells the Electric Lady “Outer space and out your mind, ooh shock me one good time”.Not only can Janelle Monáe give us thrilling funk tunes, but the soulful ballads in the second half of the album truly show the variety and talent she has. ‘Can’t Live Without Your Love’ has smooth vocals, rhythmic keyboards and ambitious strings that really showcases her talent. ‘Sally Ride’ follows but with an offbeat soul ballad, without rhythm, the jazz guitar combined with another impressive vocal performance creates its own pace and is a great wind down track after the rousing and frantic first half.‘Electric Lady’ is a record not to be missed, and considering Monáe is only 29 and is one of the most forward thinking and electrifying performers in the business right now, it’s good to know that we have many years ahead of great music to come from her. That’s of course if she stays with us, as projected on ‘Electric Lady’ “my spaceship leaves in 10”, but it’d be nice if we could hold on to her and her beautiful musical palette for just a little while longer.