About this item
About this item
Raven's latest, self-titled CD opens with a Gossip Girl anthem about glitz and glamour. Is she celebrating it or mocking it? "That Girl" is the teeny-bopper's answer to hip-hop hard guys self-congratulatory brags. "If this is a competition you can't compete" is pretty harsh. "That Girl" has it, and you don't. The second track has more techno groove. Produced by Oak of the Knightwritaz, "Anti-Love Song" is way more mature (but arguably just as jaded) and features Raven's easy phrasing and supple voice. She can sing, make no mistake, and tracks where she gets to show off her chops a little work best. "In The Pictures," yet another style change, is very catchy. There's a very nice sort of British folk influence melded with a poppy backbeat. Eric Hudson and Chris Hudson provide the instrumental backing, and the track is a stand out for its uniqueness. Kwame, producer on "That Girl" is back in the same mode on "Green," There are only so many "look at me" tracks that one record can take.
"In Your Skin" has a whole other worldview. Can you say, "Let's collaborate?" On the other hand the groove on this cut is refreshingly different, and Raven demonstrates just how well she can glide and swoop over the pulse. This girl is smooth, and she has a velvet voice when she wants it. The dark side of the CD are the mechanical grooves that Raven gets to work with. When she gets a sassy hook, like "They put the shorts on just like me" Raven delivers with a smile. She's got a charming swagger and can say "nya, nya" with the best of them. Raven is cool when she's singing about "who you lookin' at?"
"Hollywood Life" is a classic story song. The track is produced by The Jam, and the lesson is heartfelt and tragic. Raven gets to stretch out vocally on the chorus, and she hints at better things to come in the future. Raven is obviously a woman of considerable talent and class. She has the disadvantage of having fame that drives her projects. If Raven Symone could take a break from her many activities, and work on a music project for a year, she could realize her tremendous potential. She's got a voice and charm. Raven just needs a tighter concept to get the most from her talents.