Chris Brown: Exclusive

AllHipHop Staff

During the fall of 2005, Chris Brown brought us “Run It!”—a Scott Storch produced and Sean Garret penned track reminiscent of Usher’s “Yeah!” In essence, fans knew what they were getting, a pubescent R&B crooner a-la Usher, Omarion and Mario. Still, something clicked with audiences, whether it was because of Brown’s dance routines in videos, energized performances, and catchy tracks, listeners responded well, catapulting the debut single and Brown’s self-titled debut to top spots on Billboard. Chris Brown returns with Exclusive (Jive) an upbeat, mature, familiar, R&B album. Exclusive finds Chris “going back to his roots…the whole go-go thing” as he says on “Throwed,” and embracing his 18-year-old manhood as he bluntly states in “Kiss Kiss,” featuring the voice-box phenomenon, T-Pain. The deeper inflection in Brown’s voice alone makes him sound more “mature,” an idea that Chris has made sure to communicate during his personal appearances and magazine interviews (at times too emphatically).Ballads like “I Want To Be” and “Take You Down” are delivered maturely, conjuring up memories of Omarion-style vocals and lyrical arrangements. Building his vocal maturity, Brown links up with Stargate for “With You” a deja-vu track evocative of Beyonce’s “Irreplaceable.” “Wall To Wall,” the lead single off Exclusive, illustrates exactly what Chris wanted fans and audiences to see: a chick magnet, in the name of fame, not really fighting the ladies off. Showing further potential for the album to make a nest on radio waves and MTV for some time after its release are “Damage,” showing a regretful Brown after breaking a lady’s heart, and “You,” an ode to a past lover’s everlasting imprint. Exclusive isn’t much of a departure from Chris Brown’s debut, besides his own normalcy as an 18-year-old to evoke a grown-up image. This time the formula is a little tweaked – great, since it worked the first time around. Still, you can find Chris targeting his teenage audience as seen in the school gym based video “Kiss Kiss.” Plus, the songs are about chasing girls. Really, it’s what an 18-year-old would sing about, so for Chris Brown fans, it’s a perfect sophomore effort.

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