Brandy: Two Eleven
Simmering, sexy and hypnotic, Two Eleven, the new album from singer/actress Brandy, does everything and more to satiate fans and garner new ones. Named after her birthday, Two Eleven sensually works its way around a powerhouse of fiery synthesizers and undulating bass lines. Tracks range from dance floor scorchers, to ballads, to soft, pulsing, warm and cozy living room soundtrack singles built on contemplation. Lyrics play with hope, lust, remorse, maturity, playfulness and lava-hot sensuality.
“No Such Thing As Too Late” is a mid-tempo ballad in nature hoisted up by a flurry of techno-pop radiance as Brandy outlines the details of a new, slow approach to love. “Wildest Dreams” and “Put It Down” (Chris Brown is featured on the latter) are heavy-hitting singles made regal in sick beats and Brandy’s classic formula for tying together club singles with lyrical vigor. The needy “Let Me Go” samples Swedish singer/songwriter Lykke Li and is purely electric honey as it drowns in dancehall elegance and breaks into hip hop and swarming piano runs. “Paint This House” is all kinds of sexy and beat-heavy as it almost suffocates as Brandy sings, “Let’s paint this house in our love” and goes on to count the ways.
Two Eleven is Brandy’s sixth album and possesses such an impressively soulful brilliance; it ups the ante for modern R&B radio play. There is no dumbing down in lyrical vitality and the music moves through what feels like alternative newness and excitability. Two Eleven feels groundbreaking and operates with what has consistently made R&B of yesteryear dynamic and classic. The quality writing and the emotive efficacy are unparalleled and distinctive.