ALBUM REVIEW: Anti -Rihanna

Rihanna's highly anticipated eighth studio album, Anti, was finally released on January 28, 2015. The project was released through Westbury Road Entertainment and Roc Nation, and has already be certified platinum by the RIAA due to new rules that allow streams to be Yet, she's been reported that this album debuted at #27 on the Billboard charts. The music scene is definitely changing.

While her seventh album, Unapologetic (released in 2012), contained more dubstep and electronic sounds, this album, overall, is pretty mellow and chill in terms of actual music. Overall, Anti is clearly not a commercial album, with clear cut hits that would be typically heard on the radio. Rihanna is just doing her own thing, and loving it! Definitely wanted to sit with this album a while, and take everything in for this review!

As you go through the album, Rihanna continues to be "unapologetic," in the type of music she creates. Like I said, it's a complete 180 from her last album and a good majority of her upbeat work In fact, it sounds more like the majority of her fourth album, Rated RThe 13-track standard edition of the album begins with the SZA-assisted "Consideration," which showcases Rihanna's feelings about her music and overall life. "I got to do things my own way, darling. You should just let me...why you ain't never let me grow?" the duo sings on the mid-tempo track. "Same Ol' Mistakes" agrain stresses that Rihanna needs to fly in her music and overall career, regardless of what her fans and other critics may say.

Rihanna has had no problems opening up on her sexy side in recent years, and continues to prove that on tracks like "James Joint," "Kiss It Better," and "Yeah, I Said It." "Work" which features Drake, is very, VERY repetitive, but the beat is so good, you can't help but sing it and dance. At first, I didn't know about it as a single, but it grows on you! Though she's bold and confident on the outside, Rihanna still shows that she has her weaknesses on the inside, just like we all do.  I don't know how "Desperado" would do on the radio, but the dark, brooding track is definitely one of the best on the album. She is bold about wanting being an outlaw with her lover (while still running away from in love), but still doesn't want to truly be alone. "Woo," has the same kind of feel, where she's stuck in the middle between not really loving a guy, but still secretly desiring him late at night,

The doo-wop inspired "Love On The Brain" is easily Rihanna's strongest track on the album, vocally and musically. It's different for her, as she gives soul on the song. "No matter what I do, I’m no good without you," she belts. "And I can’t get enough... Must be love on the brain." The song was definitely something new for the singer, and I really enjoyed listening to it. The beautiful ballad "Close to You," is also another stand out track, reveals Ri's feelings about a friend she would protect and be there for until the very end. It could very well be about her friendship with ex-boyfriend Chris Brown, but regardless, a very touching way

Overall, I really liked  the album! Rihanna definitely brings stronger vocals that are typically hidden behind auto tune and dance music. I think she's proven her versatility as an artist, diving into different types of music and still shining. This was a more open and vulnerable album, showcasing Rihanna's sexiness and boldness, but also her deepest feelings about her life and love. There were still some tracks that could've been cut or re-recorded like "Higher" (I know the raspy vocals were on purpose, but that was a struggle to listen to). However, Rihanna really brought it on this album!

RATING: ★★★★ 1/2 (Four and a half stars) 

What did you think of Anti? 

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