Newest Review: ... there's some good stuff on this album and hints at more to come. 3.) "Warriors" This is a catchy mid tempo track which opens g... more
Lyfe changing? no but very good indeed.
Lyfe Change - Lyfe Jennings
Member Name: Lakerfanster
Lyfe Change - Lyfe Jennings
Advantages: Superb ballads, range, structure
Disadvantages: Not quite complete.
Lyfe Jennings is one of the Music's stories of changing your life for the better. In 1992, Lyfe Jennings went to prison for arson. Whilst in Prison he felt remorse and regret for what he had done and on release set about on the straight and narrow with Music. His first album "268-192" was named due to that number being his identification number in Prison. The album was released in 2004 and has sold 1.1 million copies in the US alone. It gave him a following from other stars in the R&B genre. It was re-issued in 2005 as a special edition with two new remix tracks featuring Nas and Fantasia Barrino. Jennings released an album every two years since the release of his debut up to 2010 making four studio albums.
The album was released on 29th April 2008, explaining the name Lyfe said "The album is called Lyfe Change because I'm changing it up a bit, In the past I didn't work with different producers, I produced and wrote most of my albums by myself. But on this project I actually worked with different producers and a few writers.". The album features collaborations with Snoop Dogg, Wyclef Jean, T.I & Lil Wayne, Quan and Walter Butch. The album features production from The Underdogs, Steven Russell, Wyclef Jean & Jerry Wonda Duplessis, Logic and finally Luke & Q. The album features two singles "Cops Up" & "Never Never Land" which were oddly both released before the album was released.
1.) "Change the Game"
This is a short introduction to the album with a spoken part from Walter Butch, This is an interesting mafia style vocal tale about Lyfe's outlook. It's a decent enough opening to the album. It ends with "The guy who stays in the game the longest, is the guy who brings change".
2.) "Keep on Dreaming"
This is an excellent track which features an interpolation of Suzanne Vega's Tom's Diner which itself was reworked for the Tupac Shakur track "Dopefiend's Diner". This is an excellent use of the sample and features gentle piano and rock guitar alongside an R&B feel. This is a very promising start and Lyfe's vocals are smooth and expressive, he's backed well by the backing vocalists too. This track shows there's some good stuff on this album and hints at more to come.
This is a catchy mid tempo track which opens gently with some gentle guitar and then the beat comes in, It's about how he grew up in a tough neighbourhood and how he has changed throughout the years and how there are people you should stay clear of and work hard against the dangers. An excellent track with some great licks and again some great backing vocals that are smooth and add a great touch. There's an excellent guitar solo towards the end which really tops of the song.
4.) "Never Never Land"
This is an excellent ballad, it features a tough beat and some lovely keyboard tones, Lyfe's voice is expressive on this tale of settling down with someone you love and growing old together. This is one of the best tracks on the album and was one of two singles from the album reaching number 18 on the Billboards R&B Chart when it was released. It's one of the most flowing tracks on the album and also one it's probably up there with the best tracks he has done.
5.) "Brand New"
This is an excellent ballad, It reminds me of Avant vocally and in the overall style too. The backing vocals are excellent and the beats and hooks add a nice touch. The track features T.I who provides some excellent rap vocals. The original featured Lil Wayne but he was replaced by T.I at a later date and the latter appears on this song. I think the track works really well and is more laid back than some of T.I's material but he does a decent job as does Lyfe Jennings.
6.) "It's Real"
This is an excellent track which sounds superb. The track opens with whistles and military like drumming, then the electro beat comes in, the contrast from the music to the vocals is clear to hear and the smooth vocals add a nice touch. This is one that you might need to listen to a few times before it becomes clear but it is a decent track.
7.) "Cops Up"
This is a catchy track which opens with a taut laid back bass beat and then as the beats progress the keyboard sounds come in. This track is about the moment when your partner ends the relationship and you can't believe it and still love them and what to stay with them. This is a very catchy track, no surprise then that it was released as a single. The production from Luke & Q is excellent, The track was actually written for them but they ended up doing the production.
8.) "You think you've got it bad"
This is a lovely soulful ballad about when things go wrong and everyone doesn't see your own troubles too worried about their own. Wycelf Jean appears on this track and his laid back delivery really works well alongside the catchy beats and hooks. The smooth backing vocals also give a great touch. This is undoubtedly one of the best tracks on the album and develops well throughout. It's an excellent collaboration between Lyfe Jennings and Wyclef Jean.
9.) "Wild, Wild, Wild"
This is an excellent mid tempo ballad which reminds me a little of later Dru Hill. Lyfe Jenning's vocals are smooth and expressive and the backing vocals are very good too. This is another very good track which has a good flow and progresses well. the beats and hooks will please, as will the vocals. all round it's a rather good track which will have it's fans.
10.) "Midnight train"
This is a lovely change to the album, It's a lovely acoustic style ballad about leaving in the night to get away from things. This track really flows well and really provides a great platform for the expressive vocals which Lyfe Jennings provides. This is up there with the best on the album. I really love the way the music builds along with his vocals throughout the song. It's an excellent ballad that is one of his best of his career so far. Excellent stuff and it ends beautifully with a nice, gentle fade out.
This is a soulful ballad which opens with Lyfe's gentle humming the "Hmmm". The tough beat combines well with the smooth vocals from Lyfe and the electric guitar combines well with the vocals and beat to create an excellent sound-stage. It builds wonderfully and is perhaps the best track musically on the album with some fine guitar work and thumping beats. This is an excellent track which showcases the vocal talent of Lyfe Jenning's and also how he constructs a song.
12.) "Old School"
This is another excellent track, it features some great hooks and the beat is taut. Lyfe's vocals here are amongst the best on the album and he showcases the range of his voice with a gritty vocal then a fine falsetto. This track is about remembering good times from his childhood. The track features Snoop Dogg with a surprisingly decent laid back rap which keeps to the feel of the song. It might take a couple of listens to understand the track but it's a decent track.
13.) "Us" (Interlude)
This is a short interlude which features some fine singing from Lyfe. This leads into the final two tracks on the album. His voice sounds beautiful and expressive here. This would be a sensational song if it was longer and not just an interlude. One of the best interludes I've heard.
14.) "Will I Ever"
This is a live recording from a concert and features a roaring guitar and his fans screaming, This track sounds wonderful and is a superbly recorded track. This is one of the best tracks on the album and one of his best overall. It features superb backing vocals and is about wondering if you will ever find that someone special again. This track is perfectly crafted. Beautiful vocals, excellent music and superb progression. A superb track which has great emotion and his vocals here are amongst the best on the album. Superb. topped off by some superb guitar work. Some really outstanding vocals at the end too where his voice soars.
15.) "Baby I'm a star"
This is a catchy track which features "Quan". the track is about life know Lyfe Jennings has made it as a Music star after his early troubles with the Law. It's a very good up tempo track which has a good message and "Quan" surprisingly does a decent enough job on the track. It's a very catchy track with some great beats and hooks and overall ends the album well.
This is an excellent album which really showcases the talent Lyfe Jennings obviously has. His voice is expressive and very good indeed. I also like the way a lot of these songs build so he obviously has a talent for structuring the songs. The best tracks here are amongst the best of his career to date having released four albums. He's one of the best R&B artists around and doesn't get the credit he deserves for his music. Check him out and see what you think. He's a very talented artist.
Summary: Good stuff.