I Am...Sasha Fierce
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I Am...Sasha Fierce
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Deluxe two CD pressing of the R&B diva's 2008 album containing five bonus tracks. I Am..Sasha Fierce marks the artist's first new studio collection since the Grammy-winning multi-platinum-selling B'Day debuted at #1 on charts around the world shortly after its international release on September 4, 2006. With all songs co-written and co-produced by Beyonc, the artist's third studio album is her most personal, reflective and revelatory collection to date.
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Top Customer Reviews
If you love Beyonce for her gorgeous vocals (which her hip-hop/rap/street songs do not showcase, to say the least), "I Am...Sasha Fierce" is the CD for you. The minute you hear the first track, you'll notice that Beyonce's growth as a singer is undeniable and exciting. This is a 2-disc release and yes, I've read the complaints about the two CDs being wildly different, what's the point, etc. While it might have been nice for the entire album to be ALL ballads and songs that truly showcase her vocals, I have to say her singing is featured first and foremost on all tracks, which makes the whole album very enjoyable, in part because of the disparity, and, bottom line, it's Beyonce at her very best. Now in her late 20s, her voice is richer and stronger, and we're hearing her gifted range like never before. She's also sounding more confident at this stage, as she should. This is the Beyonce from Oscar night 2005, when she belted out an unprecedented three-song set. Those performances blew me away and she definitely left me wanting more. This is the big, bold, beautiful voice I hear on "I Am...Sasha Fierce."
The first CD - her softer, slower, more personal collection - is just that, and all the songs are beautiful in their own way. These are true, classic ballads (such as "Halo"), and you're treated to one whole CD of beautifully written songs and incomparable vocals. But when I'm in the mood to crank up "Single Ladies," in goes the second CD, her "Sasha Fierce" side. It's definitely more pumped up, but almost none of the songs fall into the earlier hip-hop/Jay-Z-inspired style of many of the B'Day songs, for example. The second "Fierce" CD songs are definitely lively and witty, yet still melodic and varied. But again, her voice is what you hear, not all the noise. You can't go wrong with this album.
Together the two discs are a collection of Beyonce's highs and lows, honest acoustic accounts of love rapidly transformed into the speaker thumping club hits that make up SASHA FIERCE.
SASHA FIERCE gives the average listener a wave of different sounds to enjoy: from the infectiously complex dance rhythms found in declaration joints such as Single Ladies & Ego, to the Euro pop influenced Radio (my personal favorite) & Sweet Dreams. Moving on to the unapologetically sincere Scared to Be Lonely in which Ms. Fierce bares her heart over a fast paced Darkchild beat to reveal that her innermost fears are not that much different from that of her listeners.
I AM... is basically the polar opposite of SASHA, and introduces the "real" Beyonce to listeners in a set of gorgeous balladry. However, each song has Beyonce crossing boundaries that have previously boxed her in as an R&B soul diva in the past. On one such track, That's Why You're Beautiful, Beyonce sings a highly meaningful adult alternative ballad with much ease, and puts her own soulful edge on the rock-tinged If I Were A Boy, a song which envisions Beyonce as the unfaithful member in her relationship so as to put her cheating man in her shoes.
The acoustic Satellites is a song dripping with depth and pure emotion as Beyonce sings about her life in the limelight. Smash Into U is a truly sweet love song I absolutely adore, and has obvious country influences, however Beyonce makes it her own by embellishing it with her own superior vocal dexterity. Beyonce takes cue from Leona Lewis by singing a charming ballad about the perfect man over a hard beat in the easily likable Halo.
One track that failed desperately was the annoying Broken Hearted Girl; I usually enjoy pieces written by Babyface; however this one is an exception as I mostly just got confused with the lyrics and bored by the melody. Another track that should have been left of the album was the ridiculously trashy nonsense called Video Phone. It makes me sad to think that such trash was left on the disc, when it could have been just as easily replaced by the unreleased gem Why Don't You Love Me, with its mind-numbingly passionate vocals layered over a pulsating drum beat, and lyrics written by Beyonce's younger sister Solange, who also penned the tongue-in cheek lyrics found on Beyonce's urban smash hit Upgrade U.
Other than the two songs mentioned above, I truly love the entire album. I found that a lot of people seem to enjoy the music found on the album, but simply dislike the sequence of songs. I suggest that such people should buy the album and then create their own order for the songs in a personal playlist on their ipods--which is personally what I do for almost every album I buy.
The overall rating for this product would have been five stars, since this is indeed a very solid effort catering to a whole spectrum of listeners, but I think the decision to release an unnecessary "standard" edition of this very same album was a very greedy ploy to pry more money out of the hands of unsuspecting customers...hence my ultimate rating is 4 stars.
In the case of "I Am... Sasha Fierce," this platinum edition should be the best deal, I think.
First, it's a CD+DVD combo, the DVD contains all the music videos from this album except for "Video Phone" that is shot later, while the CD is packed with 20 songs including the single remix of "Ego" featuring Kanye West, and also "Save the Hero," "Why Don't You Love Me," and "Honesty," which are all previously Japanese-release exclusive.
People may ask: "Then what about the extended single remix of 'Video Phone' featuring Lady GaGa? It's also a single, why can't we buy the North American exclusive deluxe edition of this album that has 'Video Phone'?" It's true, only the newly released North American deluxe edition of "I Am... Sasha Fierce" has "Video Phone" feat. Lady GaGa, but remember only this platinum edition has the uncensored version of "Ego" feat. Kanye West, and if you wanna buy "Video Phone" feat. Lady GaGa on a CD, you can just buy the German CD single of "Broken-Hearted Girl" at a very low price, and in that way, you can own all the songs from this album physically at the lowest price except for only one song "Poison," which is only physically available on the North American exclusive deluxe edition.
Therefore, if you haven't bought "I Am... Sasha Fierce," this platinum edition is your best deal!