WaPo Chugs Gallons of Haterade Re: Alicia’s New Album

alicia_keys_as_i_am_cover.jpgOuch-ness! J. Freedom du Lac, Washington Post staff writer, goes after Alicia Keys' As I Am with the kind of piss and vinegar normally reserved for, well, piss and vinegar. Check out some of these catty (yet highly entertaining) points from the review:

  • That Keys has struggled to craft a lyric with [Bob] Dylan's name in it speaks to her limitations as a writer. She's an effective but generally unimaginative lyricist whose writing tends to be simple, weirdly impersonal and wholly average, with a few exceptions...
  • Awards and additional accolades followed for Keys, as have the hits. But one thing is still missing from the ingenue's résumé: A truly great album that proves she is, indeed, talented enough to deserve all those hosannas.
  • As I Am... is uneven, unfocused and never gets around to answering the critical question of exactly what -- or, rather, who -- Keys is, other than a 27-year-old artist still in search of an identity.
  • ..more often, the songs fall flat, done in by limp production and ill-conceived arrangements...
  • While the lyrics are supposed to be deeply personal, there's something generic about them and they're riddled with cliches...
  • When I think of her, I can't help but type "overrated."

Meow! Kitty has claws! At SoulBounce HQ, we're still trying to figure out if we'll even bother with a review. (I got dibs on Mary!) I mean, does our opinion even count? She'll move millions of units regardless.

Alicia Keys, Still Warming Up [WaPo]


10 Responses

  1. I hate to sip from the haterade, but I kind of agree.
    I will always remember seeing Ms. Keys on a BET special years ago where she performed "Little Drummer Boy." It was a great twist on this conventional Xmas song, and I couldn't wait to see what she had in store for the public once I found out that she had been signed.
    Needless to say, I have bought her albums fully after everyone got their fill and opined positively about Alicia, but I never totally loved one of her albums. Songs, yes. But her albums have never been wholly complete in my opinion.
    People have a tendency to treat her like D'Angelo or Lauryn or John Legend, but I personally just never felt that she has made an album to compete with her aforementioned contemporaries.

  2. He stole the words right out of my mouth (u did too ill mami). Overrated indeed. I have never been impressed with her albums. Her singles are usually good though, but that's about it. Most of her material tends to sound like borrowed goods from everyone she respects and idolizes, rather than her own interpretation of specific sounds.
    I will say this, I do respect her as an artist because she ATTEMPTS to produce music of substance. I also think she's a good composer.

  3. WTF??? Are your fucking serious? Out of all the no-singing, barely-carrying-a-tune ass, pitch-corrected ass broads out there calling themselves 'singer', this dumb muthafucka wants to go at Alicia? For real? What the hell is the world coming to?

  4. Like I mentioned before the album sucks!! It's not my regular cup of Alicia!

  5. Ha!
    That's my man J. Freedom. Homie never sits on the fence, that's for sure.
    I haven't heard the record yet myself but truthfully, other than a nice voice and lots of eye candy, I've never been blown away by Alicia. I guess I just settle for the small victory of a black woman succeeding on talent and not on looking like a tramp.
    Are there lots of non-talented pop tarts getting shine? Yup. But if you get as much praise as Alicia you have to realize that also comes with much higher expectations.

  6. I'd have to say I agree somewhat with the review... I mean she has always been an average talent... until i had to downgrade from average to sub-par after hearing 'No One'.
    I DO believe in 2nd chances, so i'll keep the rest of my opinions to myself until i hear the whole album.
    BTW... LOVE the site and the concept!

  7. I agree with that review and the others not in favor of it. The new album sucks, nothing really stands out and that's a shame. It will probably sell but it's not a classic, which she has yet to release. Her vocals sound HORRIBLE and she seems like she doesn't know what to do with herself. Alicia has had many chances and she needs to change up her producers and come with stronger material. We won't hear the real Alicia until she gets off of Clive's crotch. What a shame!

  8. I agree with the review, her album is not good at all.

  9. Whew! I'm glad I'm not out on a limb hiding from the stans by myself. HATED IT! Admittedly, I'm not a huge AK fan but I was definitely digging her first two albums MUCH more than this one. This one is too...alternative-sounding for my tastes. I don't like ONE SINGLE SOLITARY song. I actually was quite angry and wanted to return it. *Butta knows - she had to listen to my rant* But it doesn't matter what we think. She'll sell a gazillion albums and I'm not hating because she certainly can sing and she's likeable. I just don't feel her on this one. Something tells me this is the music she really wanted to make all along though.

  10. I'm always surprised when people criticize artists for not releasing a classic album. Maybe our society puffs entertainers up so much that we are expected to see them as 'brilliant' or 'i wasn't feeling it' with nothing in between. Whether AK's album is good / great / average / bad, she went into the studio to work hard and put out an album. Then she is going to do it again and try to better. Isn't that all we need our artists to do?