Newest Review: ... familiar with before buying the album. My favourite song on the album HAS to be Say It Right, which is a pop/ RnB number featuring Timbala... more
Oooh Uh - More Duds Than Hits Have Been Let Loose Here...
Loose - Nelly Furtado
Member Name: GramiWay
Loose - Nelly Furtado
Advantages: One or two great songs, excellent production
Disadvantages: Inconsistant both vocally and songwise
Nelly herself is Canadian born though has Portuguese ancestors. Whilst 'Loose' is a bit of a lyrical let down compared to the deep and emotional 'Folklore', it covers new areas and sees Nelly experimenting different sounds and styles. Whilst many accused of her of selling out to benefit her career a lot of the song's on this album are merely just a step up of what she's done before.
'Promiscuous' which features Timbaland is probably the biggest example of trying to fit in to America's urban dominated music scene and is easily the worst track on 'Loose'. The track might be half decent if it wasn't for Timbaland's lame attempts to sing. The eighties- style beats that capture the track are a great addition bringing a really catchy and strung together piece of music. Nelly's vocals are a disappointment though as she seems to be going for style rather than substance. In particular they sound too fake and out of tune with the song on the chorus.
A lot of tracks on 'Loose' have the same eerie dark beats and hypnotic hooks which makes a lot of them sound extremely repetitive. It seems as if Nelly has been swallowed up into a huge black hole and has let all of her creative flaw slip in order to have a hit album. Opening track 'Afraid' has a very energetic and up tempo beat, but again her vocals are just painful to listen to. The effects used on the track and the harmonies mildly save the song but Furtado's attempts to rap the verses just further ruins the song. My faith in her musical credibility is restored when I hear 'Maneater'. Giving Nelly her first UK number one, the beat is just frickin infectious and Nelly is clearly on top form, working the song with a racy yet addictive energy that is sorely lacking from most of this CD.
On the other hand, 'Glow' sounds as if she's singing through her nose though has a brilliant chorus that oozes appeal and probably set the template for Flo Rida's 'Low'. 'Showtime' follows but just reminds me like most of the album of songs that even Britney Spears would've rejected during her crazy years. Not even the beat can save this song. Nelly's vocals sound miles away and the typically constructed hip-hop beat in the background does nothing to strengthen the song's appeal.
Nelly incoporates some of her roots into tracks 'Te Busque' and 'No Hay Igual' with most of the lyrics being sung in Spanish. Colombian muscians guest on the former song and whilst the two tracks are definitely miles ahead of what's come so far they're still not really enough to save the album though points do go to Furtado for experimenting and playing to her strengths.
Bucking the usual album layout, 'Loose' has the majority of its stand out tracks on the second half of the CD. 'Say It Right' is probably the best song on the album with it's slow and thumping beat and the sultry and dangerous hooks that make the song eerie, passionate, addictive and just all round stunning. Even Timbaland's contribution adds to the awe of the record.
Its strength lies in the different sounds and effects that have been laid over the track. It's spooky and mysterious and just takes over the entire room when its played. There's something deeply rooted in the song that easily makes this the album's stand out track and serves once more as a reminder of the kind of music that Nelly should be making.
There are some cries back to Nelly's previous sound and image though for those who are missing it whilst listening to 'Loose'. 'In God's Hands' is a beautifully led ballad that showcases Nelly's vocals perfectly whilst 'All Good Things' is a stunning end to the album.
Nelly sort of meets herself half way with a nod to her past self whilst also keeping the hooks and moody, far away type sound she's adopted on other 'Loose' songs as well. Co-written by Coldplay's Chris Martin it is a perfect end to a rather average album. The two bonus tracks that follow should have remained locked in some vault somewhere as they take away the beautiful and wonderous presence that 'All Good Things' left behind. I'd never heard something so awful when 'Let My Hair Down' started playing and even though 'Somebody To Love' was an improvement it did nothing to cease the feelings of disappointment with this CD creep back into my system.
In conclusion, its fair to say that releasing a record like 'Loose' has only furthered Nelly Furtado's career rather than weakening it but aside from the major single releases, there's not really a lot here to get excited over. It's a huge disappointment that an artist who created such powerful and evoking music on 'Folklore' and even to an extent on her debut album can be caught up in the fickle music industry and release an album that has only a few flawless songs whilst the rest are just poor imitations of those very few stand out tracks. The vocals are very weak in places and there is certainly a lot of scratch your head moments when listening but the polished production and catchy beats will no doubt bring in the masses. However, change is good and Nelly has proven that she still has a lot of life left in her yet.
The complete tracklisting is as follows:
01 - Afraid
02 - Maneater
03 - Promiscuous [With Timbaland]
04 - Glow
05 - Showtime
06 - No Hay Igual
07 - Te Busque [With Juanes]
08 - Say It Right
09 - Do It
10 - In God's Hands
11 - Wait For You
12 - All Good Things [Come To An End]
13 - Let My Hair Down
14 - Somebody To Love
Summary: 3rd studio album from Nelly Furtado