Rihanna’s new album Loud is an eclectic mix of music; unfortunately its eclectic in a bad way. With so many competing styles crammed on to this one CD it unfortunately ends up being incredibly incoherent and distracting to a listener. There are good songs to be found too, but let's just say they are few and far between.
Loud swings from the extremes of the intentionally drunk/unintentionally terrible sounding Cheers to the piano ballad Fading so clumsily it painful. Not content with the throw-everything-at-the-wall-and-see-what-sticks style of song choice, the producers have Rihanna playing acting and imitating popular singers of the moment to try and second guess a hit song. The acoustic guitar, adult contemporary California King Bed is a song that you'd expect Taylor Swift to be singing, with the difference being she would have arranged and written it better. Whereas Raining Men will have Beyonce stans, who are usually Rihanna haters, going crazy as is it mimics Diva so unashamedly that its just embarrassing it got onto the album.
Its not all bad though, and where Rihanna really shines is where she sticks to music that doesn't try too hard and instead embraces the fun, carefree spirit that the 21 year old seems to exude on songs like Only Girl and S and M.
Conclusion: Extremely disappointed. Who's that Chick-which is strangely omitted- and Only Girl had me so excited about this album, but its lack of focus and its desperation for hit singles was a total turn off.
Skip: Cheers (Drink To That), California King Bed, Raining Men (feat. Nicki Minaj)
Download: S and M, Only Girl (In The World), Skin