Customer Review

116 of 125 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 2012 R&B from Frank Ocean, July 12, 2012
This review is from: channel ORANGE [Explicit] (Audio CD)
First, the statement/announcement made on Frank Ocean's tumblr earlier this month...

It's significant and quite frankly, `Radical.' Right now, it's almost impossible to write a review without talking about, or at least mentioning, the letter. Read it if you haven't already. It's important. And at the time this review was written, tons of celebrities have already offered their reactions, read: Russell Simmons, Chuck D, Solange Knowles, Stephen Hill, and then, of course Tyler the Creator and Earl Sweatshirt. And many others, to follow, I'm sure.

But enough about the letter. There's music to talk about and questions to answer. Like, is this album any good? Does André 3000 deliver on the track `Pink Matter?' And, what does the John Mayer collaboration track actually sound like? Let's start by answering all of that right now: yes, the album is very good. Yes André 3000 delivers (and more) on arguably, and probably, one of the better (if not best) tracks of this record. And John Mayer doesn't say anything because `White' is an instrumental track and it sounds like what you would expect: Frank Ocean and John Mayer, in the studio, jamming together. But the track is chill, virtuosic and pretty damn good. And for a track that doesn't seem to say much, it says a lot, even without any lyrics. But onto the album itself, as a whole.

First and foremost, for those not in-the-know, Frank Ocean is 24, he's an R&B singer, and yes, he is a member of the infamous Los Angeles-based hip-hop collective/crew/group/club (what-have-you) Odd Future Wolfgang Kill Them All (OFWGKTA). And when I listen to the record, I think R. Kelly and Kid Cudi and Kanye West, largely because Channel Orange sounds like all of the good things from all of those artists, (the singing from R. Kelly, the synth-laden soundscapes and beats from Kid Cudi and the charisma, coolness and confidence of Kanye West, albeit a little more low-key) all packaged into one neat little box, or I guess, CD case (or MP3 download or Vinyl).

People are probably going to be talking about Channel Orange for a little while. Probably, because of the letter, and also, because of how damn good it is. The most talked-about/hyped album right now, for sure. So again, you may want to know, is Channel Orange any good? In short, yes, it's damn good.

This is a solid and cohesive album, 17 tracks in all, complete with intros, instrumental interludes and outros (yeah, we definitely called those skits back in the 90s and early 00s) but everything on Channel Orange sounds focused and with purpose. And I say `focused' and `with purpose' because Channel Orange is not littered with guests. Just Earl Sweatshirt, John Mayer (who doesn't even sing or anything, remember that!) and André 3000. The track titles themselves are pretty remarkable (I think) and full of gumption (`Super Rich Kids,' `Pyramids,' `Pink Matter,' `Forrest Gump,' etc.) and rest assured, it never drags (55 minutes and then some).

Album highlights include:

Thinkin Bout You
Sweet Life
Super Rich Kids (feat. Earl Sweatshirt)
Pilot Jones
Pyramids
White (feat. John Mayer)
Bad Religion
Pink Matter (feat. André 3000)

As a whole, Channel Orange is, quite honestly, probably the definitive R&B album this side of 2012. And this is what 2012 R&B sounds like. So, Channel Orange is probably what I mean when I write things like "timeless music," and "summer music," and "really good," and "this means something," but... in the end "i don't know anything & neither do you."
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Comments

Tracked by 3 customers

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Showing 1-9 of 9 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jul 12, 2012 5:54:18 PM PDT
TylerB says:
Good review. Rather than R. Kelly and Kanye, I really hear pieces of The-Dream and D'Angelo.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 12, 2012 7:29:19 PM PDT
I agree with you. Those I can hear, also.

Thank you for the comment TDeGraaf

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 13, 2012 9:52:10 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 13, 2012 9:53:14 AM PDT
RBSProds says:
Great review of an important new artist coming out of studio background and groups, moving even more into the light of solo performing.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 13, 2012 1:59:28 PM PDT
Something I forgot to mention in the review, Ocean's "studio background." Important stuff. Wrote for Justin Bieber, etc.

Thank you for the comment RBSProds

Posted on Sep 11, 2012 9:48:15 AM PDT
N.Yorker says:
What impresses me the most is the novelty. I don't know if I can call frank oceans's Channel Orange R&B. This kid made a new kind of music that is quite simply unlike anything out there. The energy in this album is absolute creativity.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 2, 2013 11:35:44 AM PST
Tresbella says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 26, 2013 7:51:41 AM PDT
Yes.

Posted on Dec 18, 2013 7:07:53 PM PST
Peggy W. says:
my son and daughter introduced me to frank ocean. in their very own way. my daughter played it in her passat. i got hooked and played it in my rodeo. left the inside credit book in the car window dash. my son got in and asked me how did i get his book? coming from korea and all his things packed he couldn't figure how i got his frank ocean credits book out of his luggage. only i didn't. it was mine. he had one ,she had one and i had one.. carrying it around wanting to listen to it in the ride and in the crib, it got nicked. that was not good. it soundz so nice i had to buy it twice. but unbeknownst to me i never thought of it as being explicit, until i bought the clean version. ooops! now i gotta buy it again. i got used to explicit. would not have it any other way. unless of course, i listen to it in my rodeo, when i am taking my aunt to run errands. is this cd any good? absolutely. buy the clean and explicit copies if you have impressionable preteens around. its worth every line.

Posted on Jan 21, 2015 6:32:34 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 21, 2015 6:33:30 AM PST
Octave says:
Based on the Discogs listing, it looks like the US edition of this album has seventeen tracks, with the final track being 2:15 long; looks like a European edition (Amazon product page shows a sticker with some French hype on the cover) has a hidden bonus track, "Golden Girl" (apparently part of track seventeen), bringing the total time of the last track to ~8.43, according to Discogs.
The barcode for this European edition (there may be others) is 602537102327.

Is the Discogs listing for the US edition incorrect, i.e. does it include "Golden Girl"?
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