Thursday, July 08, 2010

The Sellout

Don't call it a comeback (unless you're talking about the lush, soaring, defiant closing track by that name)...the irrepressible Ms. Macy Gray never really went anywhere (even if it has been 3 years since she dropped her last disc)...but this disc feels like a return to form just the same. Gray has never managed to catch the magic of her wonderful break though, On How Life Is, but that doesn't mean she hasn't put out some compelling music in the years since that great debut disc.

The Sellout isn't quite in the same league as Life but, that said, it is fierce, funny, engaging, and rock solid from beginning to end. There is a positive vibe throughout...even when she's decrying wayward lovers or haters who don't understand her...and it definitely keeps your head nodding and your feet tapping.

From the joyful sunshine of "Beauty in the World" (see below) to the sexy, irresistable thump of "Kissed It"...from the clever word play of the infectious title track to the aching blues of the grand "Still Hurts"...from the acoustic mid-tempo lilt of the plaintive "Let You Win"...from the in-the-pocket funk of "Stalker" to Macy's magnificent rasp of a voice is in fine form and the grooves around her are uniformly tight and engaging (the groove...including a great breakdown in the middle...of the sassy girl group romp "That Man" is so cool I just had to smile all the way through.)

Gray and Brown (Macy and Bobby) come together for a downright golden old school R&B duet on "Real Love" (Bobby Brown's voice blends right nicely with Ms. Gray's.)

Bottom line is that The Sellout is a winner that will be spending a lot of time booming out of my stereo this summer (and for a long time after that.)

No comments: