As I sit down to write this review, Shock Value 2 plays in the background. It has some wonderful songs, some mediocre ones, and a few forgettable ones. The great songs, though, cannot seem to outshine their murkier ilk.
Standouts include Morning After Dark featuring Nelly Furtado and Timabaland’s newest protégée (the Paris-based SoShy). The song, as Timbaland describes it, is homage to Twilight. It has great beats and wonderful vocals. His new singer turned rapper SoShy gives a great verse and Nelly croons greats as always when she’s paired with Timbaland. Next is Can You Feel It featuring Esthero and rapper Sebastian. It has a bouncy club feel with booming bass that is a wonderful listen from start to finish. Thirdly we have Say Something where Drake stays within his comfort zone telling a narrative and ha sa good track. Lastly, we have Carry Out featuring Justin Timberlake. His song, like his appurtenance on Give it Up on Shock Value is great. The song shows how much Timberlake can add to a track when he’s in his element.
Giving a song a mediocre tag isn’t as easy as it may sound. It means that the song is passable. In my view, the song, if tagged mediocre, loses it luster if played too much. That is the case with We Belong to the Music featuring Miley Cyrus who has since given up her pop roots in favor of exploring other genres. The song has a pop-y feel to it and has a good energy but I think this songs shows exactly the limit of Miley’s vocals. There are parts she strains to hit a couple high notes, resulting in almost a squeal. Next on our trek down the mediocre trail is Symphony featuring Attitude, Bran’Nu, and D.O.E. This song is good upon the first listen and maybe the second but after that the upbeat beats can’t save this song. In my opinion Brandy’s alter ego (Bran’Nu) should be medicated. Perhaps that is too harsh, but her contribution just isn’t that memorable.
The only song I did not personally care for was Intro featuring DJ Helli Fel.
The rest of the songs (listed below) while not forgettable just don’t deserve mention alongside the tracks listed. One thing I must mention before closing this review out is that Timbaland is a wonderful producer but for the most part his vocal serve as an weighty anchor to an otherwise buoyant track. If I could be so bold as to offer the multi-platnium artist/producer some advice, stay with the girl that brought you to the dance.
1.Intro (feat. DJ Felli Fel)
2. Carry Out (feat. Justin Timberlake)
3. Lose Control (feat. JoJo)
4. Meet in tha Middle (feat. Bran’ Nu)
5. Say Something (feat. Drake)
6. Tomorrow in the Bottle (feat. Chad Kroeger & Sebastian)
7. We Belong to Music (feat. Miley Cyrus)
8. Morning After Dark (feat. Nelly Furtado & SoShy)
9. If We Ever Meet Again (feat. Katy Perry)
10. Can You Feel It (feat. Esthero & Sebastian)
11. Ease Off the Liquor
12. Undertow (feat. The Fray & Esthero)
13. Timothy Where You Been (feat. Jet)
14. Long Way Down (feat. Daughtry)
15. Marching On (Timbo Version)(feat. OneRepublic)
16. The One I Love (feat. Keri Hilson & D.O.E.)
17. Symphony (feat. Attitude, Bran’ Nu & D.O.E.)
Star: 4 out of a possible 5