We as music fans have witnessed Pharrell’s contributions to music. Production (along with his Neptune’s partner Chad Hugo), hooks and other things as well. He’s also released an album or two… (Well four albums with N.E.R.D. and his first solo album, In My Mind back in 2006.) After a hit collaboration with Daft Punk last year and the hit song, “Happy” from the Despicable Me 2 soundtrack, Pharrell released G I R L which is his first solo album in eight years. Now we know that Pharrell type of singing is different but let’s review the album anyway.
1. “Marilyn Monroe“: When you hear the strings, you know that this is about to be something different. Pharrell begins the album with a track that’s dedicated to all the wonderful women in the world. (“She’s everything I want, and it’s crystal clear/Not even Marilyn Monroe/Queen Cleopatra please/Not even Joan of Arc/That don’t mean nothin’ to me/I just want a different girl”) When Pharrell sings about wanting a different girl, it’s something that I can relate to. You want one that stands out among the rest.
2. “Brand New” feat. Justin Timberlake: “Life to me is easy/People make it complicated/When love is the tool/No reason we can’t make it” Pharrell teams up with Justin Timberlake as they sing about the effect that a good woman can have on you. Those sentiments echo loudly at the closing bridge of the song: “The more I try, at bein’ satisfied/And didn’t think that I could/But then you came along, and you made me strong/Like God said you would”
3. “Hunter“: You ever see that one person that catches your eyes and you just got to have them. (“Just because it’s the middle of night/That don’t mean I won’t hunt you down/Cause up, in, deep inside/It’s pullin’ me and I want your love/You and I should be gettin’ it right”) Just one of those songs that describes that moment where you want to attack your consenting prey in the bedroom. (“I show my teeth/And I hope you know that look in my eyes/I got lightnin’ speed/I won’t hesitate to rescue what is mine”)
4. “Gush“: “But I don’t wanna mislead you/Tonight I think I wanna be dirty, girl/Do you wanna get dirty, girl? Come on” Strip away your inhibitions and allow that fire inside of you to take over.
5. “Happy“: Can’t deny the dance appeal this song brings out of you. (“Clap along if you feel like happiness is the truth/Because I’m happy/Clap along if you know what happiness is to you/Because I’m happy/Clap along if you feel like that’s what you wanna do”)
6. “Come Get It Bae” feat. Miley Cyrus: Miley sounds like Kelis on this track. But this is lowkey one of my favorite tracks on this album. (“You wanna ride it, my motorcycle/You’ve got a license, but you got the right to/Gonna pop a wheelie, don’t try too high too/Take it easy on the clutch, cause girl I like you”)
7. “Gust of Wind” feat. Daft Punk: “When I first saw you, I got excited/Tried to keep my composure, tryna hide it” Reminds me of when I met my lady. She didn’t know it but she was going to be mine. (“Like a gust of wind/You head me off sometimes/Like a gust of wind/You push me back every once in a while/Like a gust of wind/You remind me there’s someone up there/Who whooshes in/The air I need to power my sail”) That one woman who just takes your breath away when you catch sight of her.
8. “Lost Queen“/”Freq” feat. Jojo: This song is a two-part track. “Lost Queen” is a great track where praise is being shown to the woman that has your heart. (“I don’t have a problem with multi-taskin’/Takin’ care of you is my number one passion/Put it before my eyes, you know I’ma smash it/Only if you want it, want it/You don’t have to ever think about askin’/I can read your mind, girl, of course I have it”). After a interlude of waves, “Freq” comes in with Pharrell singing about the effect that love has on you. (“You see I’d rather be a freq than not be unique/Individuality makes life better”) and Jojo’s singing on “Freq” is just… everything. Great vocals.
9. “Know Who You Are” feat. Alicia Keys: Your lady needs to be uplifted when she’s going through it. Exactly what I tell her when she’s not feeling at her best and she she’s that little shove to get her going. This is what Pharrell is singing and he brought out the best of Alicia Keys in recent memory. (“And girl don’t let them tell you that/you don’t deserve to unwind/And if they don’t want to join us, cool, but it’s our time/We just shake our heads, and dance, the moment so surreal/Isn’t it sad? There’s people in this world that don’t know how this feels”)
10. “It Girl“: This song right here may have me dancing more than “Happy” does. The song is about that the reaction you receive when your lady isn’t around. I know that feeling all too well. (“Truly gettin’ me high, I be missin’ you/You make me downright seasick/Oh the only way you can do that to me”) AND THIS OUTRO INSTRUMENTAL!!!!! LISTEN!!!! IF I COULD JUST GET THAT LOOPED OVER AND OVER FOR TEN MINUTES, ALL WOULD BE RIGHT IN MY WORLD!
A follower of mine on Twitter told me to clean out my ears because I agreed with someone else saying that G I R L was a great album. And it is. The singing is different but who said that conventional standards are required to get your point across in song. Hell, I can’t sing but best believe when a favorite song of mine comes on, I’ll sing it like I wrote it myself. Pharrell continues to cruise in his own lane when it comes to music and I’ll gladly play G I R L in appreciation of great music.