Artist – Album: Beyoncé - 4
Released: 24th June 2011
Sounds Like: Party Up (Up in Here)
Well today has been a massive write off. I had the longest lie-in I’ve ever, ever had – it was about quarter to one when I woke up! – and I’m already looking forward to heading back to bed. Why? Because yesterday I had a grand old craic partying with the Irish side of my family. A party featuring dancing in equal measures to traditional Irish music and Gangnam Style, talking to (and poking fun of) lovely strangers, downing Jaeger shots, whisky, beer and anything else we can lay our hands on and, during the afterparty, giggling at R.Kelly’s Trapped in the Closet and Autotune the News on Youtube. Yep, we like to party.
You know who else likes to party? Beyoncé. I know this because she rounds up Kanye West and Andre 3000 amongst others to tell us all about it on ‘Party’. In truth she didn’t really need to spell it out, as the album is stocked full of tracks to boogie on down to. From the shimmering dance of ‘Love on Top’ to the stomping ‘Run the World (Girls)’ the album successfully fuses elements from such diverse sources as dad rock, 70s disco, 80s R&B, afrobeat and her usual brand of sassy hip pop. Next to the floor fillers are the lung-busting ballads that showcase her brilliant vocals. ‘I Care’, ‘Best Thing I Never Had’ and ‘Rather Die Young’ are huge adoring anthems; ones that you can imagine being belted out at a karaoke by some local songstress emboldened by passion and half a dozen double vodka and red bulls.
The album’s best moment, ‘Countdown’, takes its cue from ‘Crazy in Love’ – propelled by a marching band percussion and funky brass, it’s a giddy declaration of the love that she has for her husband and her soon-to-born baby (“I’m trying to make a three from the two. Still the one”). The accompanying music video, which shows a heavily pregnant Mrs Z dancing away like the icon that she is, is a wonderfully playful fashion piece that reiterates her love for the lucky duo. You couldn’t be happier for the couple that they were able to bring another person into their little party.
Albumaday... rating: 7/10
1. 1+1 – 4:33
2. I Care – 3:59
3. I Miss You – 2:59
4. Best Thing I Never Had – 4:13
5. Party – 4:05
6. Rather Die Young – 3:42
7. Start Over – 3:19
8. Love on Top – 4:27
9. Countdown – 3:32
10. End of Time – 3:43
11. I Was Here – 3:59
12. Run the World (Girls) – 3:56
Listen to ‘Countdown’: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2XY3AvVgDns
Also released on the 24th May:
2003: The Mars Volta – De-Loused in the Comatorium