The Kelly Rowland album “Ms. Kelly” came out in 2007 I do believe. Many never gave Kelly Rowland the time of day because they were already in love with her fellow singer from Destiny’s Child: Beyonce. However, the random shuffle that is the music world and Internet advertising landed me on Kelly Rowland’s album, from which I had never heard a song from previously, and I decided to see how the second fiddle sounded.
“Ms. Kelly” is not a bad album at all. It is a well put together journey that wallows more in regret than anything, but then does its best to bring the listener back up out of it, rebuilds some armor, but doesn’t do the job all of the way. Some empowerment music to be had, but mostly this is a record for sad people to listen to in moments of pathetic sorrow. Formula as it is, it is a nice dose and in comparing it to Beyonce’s 2011 album “4” I would say “Ms. Kelly” is a better one; easier on the ears, more genuine with emotion.
“Like This”: A female empowerment anthem about not losing one’s groove after a relationship ends. Kelly is back on the dance floor “bumping,” just like she told ya’ll she was going to do. The shout outs to “all my ladies” is silly, but the song itself is well put together in theme and infectious hook. Eve makes a little rap bit and it is text book formula, successfully so. Kelly Rowland isn’t too screechy or yelling about her bumping in your face, nice and mellow bumping.
“Comeback”: A lot of repeating words several times in a row to another bump-bump beat. Honestly, I could not understand a good portion of what she was singing for some reason. The bump-bump beat could play without the vocals and suit as background boom box fare, but really not a great song.
“Ghetto”: Snoop Dogg opens this song and Kelly joins in with a Jessica Rabbit lounge vibe in place. You can imagine the booze in the glasses, cigars, and the diamond in the rough up on stage crooning. It brings a sense of luxury to the ghetto that the lyrics speak about, which is actually: weird. She sings so sweetly about how her baby rolls “ghetto” with the dice and such. I don’t know, have you ever been to the projects? Not as sexy as she makes it sound. Weird song, but that makes it interesting.
“Work”: Her voice bounces along to the sped up beat tempo and Kelly Rowland shows the world she is no second fiddle to Beyonce. The song is a nice showcase, but not a song-song hit single type of song, so the world probably did not notice. I say this of course without even bothering to look up this album’s information to see what were singles released or chart makers.
“Flashback”: This is a song of regrets, having flashbacks and wishing she had not left the person she was in a relationship with. “Flashback” shows diversity and range in subject matter emotion. She opens the album with an empowerment anthem and then is able to go to this place of admitting mistakes and pathetic longing. Songs like this, even on pop R& B albums that I normally won’t give the time of day, are the markings of a good album for what it is. It seems most music anymore is more about vanity and ego.
“Every Thought Is You”: Making whoopee music, sexy groove, but you’re not paying attention at all if it’s done its job correctly. Lyrically it is just another “I’m addicted to you” type of song.
“The Show”: More making whoopee music, but a more blatant attempt at achieving such status it seems. A man is singing along, opens it, I’m not going to look up who it is, doesn’t really add anything, Rowland can drive a “mood” song alone adequately. Nothing stands out about this one for me, previous track was stronger and felt like the same type of vibe.
“Interlude”: Some piano and Kelly singing on about an ended relationship and missing the good man. Perhaps this is less an interlude and more of an intro for the next song which appears to be titled “Still In Love With My Ex.”
“Still In Love With My Ex”: The lyrics from “Interlude” are indeed in place here in this song as well. Now Kelly Roland is in danger of making the theme of her album all about regretting leaving her ex. It is good to be vulnerable and can also work obsessively exploring a singular subject, but in R & B it kind of becomes repetitive sounding as each track is just a bump different from the previous. Regardless, standing alone, this one actually does have a catchy flow to it. When Kelly starts talking about saying sorry being hard though, it is slightly awkward, but then so is life. I think I give this a thumbs up, think so, sure.
“Love”: Bland. Sounds like a million other songs. My guess is this song with more angst in the delivery is the predictable rise back out of the wallowing where the previous tracks took us after the “I am strong” opening. Hurting, but have to get over it, which is a nice journey, just predictable, see how it goes.
“Better Without You”: Yep, like I said previously, we’re being taken through the different steps of coping with an ended relationship. Now she is “better without you.” This album is very identifiable for almost everyone, mass appeal in subject matter, but in a crowded market, but I don’t think the age of the album should hold it back, though it most likely does. Sad song vibe on this one just like the songs of regret, only this time regret has been replaced with slowly building confidence.
“This Is Love”: Acoustic guitar and Kelly Rowland singing, a perfect ending for what came before it all. She tried to bounce back from a relationship that ended, went out to parties, then realized what she had given up, wallowed in regret, then did her best to get over it, and now singing with the scars from the broken shards of heart, but singing none-the-less and with a mind towards what love is and what she wants.