2007 album from the sassy Latin music diva, actress and successful business woman (AKA J-Lo), Jenny from the block is back again with her blazing new album Brave. Jennifer Lopez's soft feel and hot vocals heats up the album's 13 new tracks including her worldwide smash-hit single, 'Do It Well'. The new record is fast moving and pulls in new and old fans of Jennifer Lopez. With collaboration from producers J.R. Rotem, Ryan Tedder, Middi Mafia, Bloodshy, and more, Brave is one of the year's most sizzling albums. Epic.
It would take a pretty good argument to deny that Jennifer Lopez is brave--nobody transitions from dance to film to music as boldly or as fluidly--but bravery doesn't factor much into her new disc, despite the title. And that's a good thing. On Brave, JLo busts out a batch of songs that don't challenge pop-appreciative ears--there's no cross-genre experimenting, no political point-making, and no self-serving, overblown ballads. In their place are well turned-out hooks (see "Mile in These Shoes," a song apt to cause ankle injuries in untold numbers of Jimmy Choo owners), bright production ("Hold It Don't Drop It" samples Tavares's groovealicious "It Only Takes a Minute"), and a voice very much in the mood to have a good time. "Stay Together," the opener, sets a happy, beat-heavy tone that holds up all album long--here's Jenny reminding the masses that monogamy need not be a buzz kill: "Stay together, it's the new break-up/Stay together, it's the new trend," she trills, and you believe her. Brave may not be the most groundbreaking record ever to climb the pop charts, but it's enough to convince you JLo's discs don't stint on substance. And it'll raise your pulse, too. --Tammy La Gorce