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With one of the most distinctive and recognizable voices in contemporary music, the beautiful Toni Braxton returns to the international marketplace with the 2005 release of Libra, her sizzling debut set for Blackground/Universal Records. Libra - acknowledging the singer's October 7 birth date - represents a new milestone in an achievement-filled career, completing a three-year hiatus from recording for TONI. An eagerly-anticipated follow-up to her top-selling CD, More Than A Woman, the new album finds the multiple Grammy award-winning artist delivering material that reflects her creative maturity. With a musical nod to the kind of finely-crafted songs that first propelled her to global fame over a decade ago, Libra strikes the perfect balance between today's radio friendly grooves (exemplified by the album's hot first single, 'Please') and 'old school' flavored slow jams (such as 'Stupid' and 'Midnite'), giving the multi-talented entertainer a new opportunity to bring her instantly-recognizable vocal style back to the forefront.
Toni Braxton delivers Libra nearly a decade after she busted up the R&B landscape with her gut-wrenching appeal, on 1996's Secrets, that a wayward lover un-break her heart. Back then, Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds was helming her records, and with his sound came a certain spun-silk smooth, wistful sensibility. Braxton may have been one of his better students, but Babyface's sound didn't hold up (for proof, check his own 2005 disc, Grown & Sexy). Where some breathy, smoky-voiced sirens might have called it a day, scampering off into career obscurity with their six Grammys in tow, Braxton resists the temptation to quit or to satiate the faithful with a yawny record; Libra, more than just a vehicle for evolving, adapting, and overcoming, is among the freshest, most tastefully done R&B discs to come out in 2005. Highlights belong strictly to the first half, with opener "Please" swinging wide the door for what will universally be recognized as this disc's two best tracks: "Trippin' (That's the Way Love Works)" belongs to that oft-strived-for league of songs that merit the tag "irresistible," and "Take this Ring," with its blaxploitation-film soundtrack effects, splices in just enough funk--and the right kind--to fuel a thousand replays. --Tammy La Gorce
Top Customer Reviews
With six Grammy's under her belt, the Maryland-born clergyman's daughter doesn't disappoint, except for the length of the album. However, hunt for a copy with the bonus tracks "Suddenly" and "Long Way Home" and you're home free. (The UK version has the bonus tracks)
This is a strong return, following 2002's "More Than a Woman", not counting the two "collection" albums in between. First single "Please" is an upbeat R&B pleaser, but my pick is single number two "Trippin' (That's The Way Love Works)", the best track by a long shot.
A solid album, and a must for all Braxton and R&B music fans everywhere.
Amanda Richards, October 3, 2005
Please-Produced by Scott Storch (Floetry's Supastar; Mario's Let Me Love you; Terror Squad's Lean Back), this mid-tempo was released as the first single. It has a very catchy beat; Toni's smoky vocals gives the right slant to this edgy song. There was a nice accompanying video, but radio never warmed to this song. A-
Trippin' (That's The Way Love Works)-Produced by Bryan Michael Cox (Faith Evans' Tru Love, Mary J. Blige's Be Without you; Usher's Burn; Fantasia's you Got Me Waiting; Destiny's Child's Bad Habit; Frankie J's How to Deal) and Keri Lewis, this smoldering ballad with tinges of a dark sound is the trademark song for Bryan Michael Cox. He's one of my favorite producers because while his songs are similar, they all have a unique vibe to them that distinguishes them from other songs out there.Read more ›
Anyway that's just my opinion but to focus on the music. I would recommend the songs "PLEASE", "FINALLY", "TRIPPIN'", "WHAT'S GOOD", "I WANNA BE" and "TAKE THIS RING" which has an incredible rhythm and Toni's perfromance is great. The album was produced by Toni, Keri Lewis (Toni's husband), Vincent Herbert, Jomo Hankerson and Barry Hankerson. I really miss here L.A Reid, Babyface and Diane Warren. They should always be on Toni's productions.
You should give a shot to this album, it's not Toni's best but it's pretty good and let's hope that Toni gets back to the big success that she used to have.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I love it, it's so good to listen to this CD again and it plays So Well 😌 And the package had arrived sooner than I thought, Yay! But All in all its Awesome!!!Published 4 months ago by Britt
I had high hopes that this is a good album because of the good reviews, but I was disappointed. I didn't like any of the songs in this album.Published 10 months ago by Wall-E