R&B singer Brandy has returned to the music scene with her new album, "Two Eleven," released October 16. The title signifies the singer's birthday, but also represents the death of the late Whitney Houston. This is Brandy's sixth album and she stays true to the genre that proved successful for her in the 90s. As a top Billboard R&B/hip-hop album, her fans have widely received the work.
Even from the first look at her cover album, the singer begins to revive images of the earlier R&B days, with her piercing glare and black attire. The intro is reminiscent of a James Bond theme and of Brandy's earlier hit, "Full Moon." It works to inspire the listener to continue enjoying the album.
From its 14 tracks, the most widely recognized is the popular single "Put It Down," featuring Chris Brown. It has a repeated hook conventional of many popular songs. Brandy croons about being old school in wanting a chivalrous guy. The message is simple, but works well. As long as the male in the song "puts is down," things run smoothly and the female will fall in love.
Brown plays a little with the double entendre punning on "brandy," the liquor and the singer. His appearance serves to attract more pop listeners, with its recent popularity evident through the near continual play on the radio. "Put It Down" seems destined to become a much played hit in clubs and cars across the country.
Brandy's distinctive alto, coupled with piano, forms the ballad "Wildest Dreams." It reminds listeners of the singer's previous songs from her heyday. The song is produced by The Bizness, who has worked on well-known tracks such as Young Money's "Every Girl" and Young Jeezy's "My President (Is Black)." The single holds a steady beat with some jazz influences. She sings on the joys of unexpected true love. The singer also addresses the healing nature and comfort received from genuine feelings ("You came in my life and help me heal /Just in the knick of time"). A theme of love for the person is present as well — it's hard to imagine such feelings, even in your wildest dreams.
Other songs compliment the singer's voice and style, such as "Let Me Go" and "Without You." The tracks on Brandy's album display her musical talent, but not much variation is apparent. It's important to appeal to her core fan base, and she does so in "Two Eleven." Perhaps after appeasing her neglected fans after a lengthy hiatus, she'll move to expand her brand and style of music.