After selling close to 20 million albums as the mastermind of the Black Eyed Peas,Grammy winner will.i.am is ready for his solo release - Songs About Girls. Will has recently produced hits for many artists Fergie, Sergio Mendes, Pussycat Dolls, John Legend, Nas,The Game, Justin Timberlake to name a few... Songs About Girls is produced and written by will.i.am with Snoop Dogg confirmed as the 1 featured artist. He has made a concept album with songs surrounding common relationship issues. It really made me aware of how much is possible musically, he says.
Talent as big as Will.i.am's can't help making a lot of noise, and Songs About Girls
is, for sure, a big, noisy record. But in addition to the kind of hugeness, it's sometimes hard to get your head around--see "Impatient," a freaked-up, very busy club joint--there's an outsize effort to connect with listeners on a deeper level here. Will.i.am, whose unstoppable run as a producer may have temporarily rubbed the sheen off his reputation as an artist, pulls it off in his own radiant, loopish, never-boring way. The best of this batch of songs chronicles a failed real-life relationship: "Over," which was co-written with Jeff Lynne and plucks from ELO's way-cool "It's Over," leads the pack with a bust-the-walls-in beat, and it's followed by the excellently unruly related numbers "Heartbreaker," "One More Chance," "Invisible," and "Fantastic." Listen to the hip-hoppy lyrics to these songs--several resonate through the hoots, horns, and hype--and you get the sense Will.i.am's appetite for the meaninglessly spectacular has diminished. But then "The Donque Song" comes along. Bouncing off a lot of electronic beats, booty references, and sly asides by Snoop--Girls'
only guest star--"Donque" does its pulse-raising thing in classic out-there Will.i.am form; ditto first single "I Got It from My Mama," which traffics in sound effects and Black Eyed Peas-type call and response. "S.O.S.," a plea sent out on behalf of the environment, ends the disc on a somber note, but don't expect to walk off feeling all serious; Songs About Girls
sucks its listeners way too far into the center of a stylish, if gloriously unhinged, universe for that. --Tammy La Gorce