Release: June 12, 2012
Usher's latest sounds like a battle between r&b, pop, and dance. It's a great mixture nonetheless, and I did enjoy every single track. I must admit I wasn't expecting to being that David Guetta contributed to the album (sorry I'm not a fan of his generic sound). However, there were a couple tracks that won me over completely.
Looking 4 Myself is a wonderful depiction of where the artist is at this point in his life. It signifies where he's going next with his music, and whether he's prepared to take it to the next step. Trust me when I say that after you finish listening to this one, you'll be convinced that Usher has indeed found himself and should look no further. I strongly suggest getting the deluxe version, that one's even hotter.
Can’t Stop Won’t Stop takes things off on an electro vibe. It’s the ultimate party starter. I love the dubstep effects and hypnotic beat. One thing though, Usher does not need autotune so I don’t see the necessity of its existence in his music.
Scream is a awesome dance track. It’s great for the clubs and mainstream radio. Hence, why its a single. The hook is addictive and his voice is at its sexiest height.
Climax smooths it out and pulls in the listeners undivided attention. I love the message within; no, it’s not bout sex, its instead a question: where to go next in the relationship, let it end, or fight for it? They’ve reached a climax, so what do they do now? I love it. I Care For You continues the slow tempo momentum. The track is almost like ecstasy. Usher gets sensual, what he does best. He’s trying his hardest to show his true feelings. He’s basically raw.
Show Me picks up the pace. This is a mellowish, groovy r&b with pop influences. It’s great for the dance floor but also for an intimate setting. Lemme See on the other hand, is all about intimacy. I almost thought Drake or Lil Wayne was gonna jump out being that the beat is more of what you’d expect from their producers, but Usher rides on the track seductively well, and Rick Ross’ appearance is worth while. The track touches on hip hop and demonstrates how versatile Usher is as an artist.
Its nice to hear a Pharrell creation on a artist’s album because I’ve missed him for a while. Twisted embodies his production; the beat is unique, the melody is like no other. This track stands out the most on the album because of its individuality and how different it sounds from everything else. But like I’ve stated before, its expected of a Pharrell production.
I. LOVE. Dive. This song is full of love, intimacy, pleasure, and all the exotic things that come out when Usher sings. Need I say more.
I’d have to say that What Happened To U sounds just as real as Climax. I feel as if Usher is at his realness on these tracks cause you’re hearing issues from his life and what he’s dealing with. When an artist is absolutely with his music it sounds much better.
Looking 4 Myself, the title track, was the biggest surprise. I never expected to hear a retro inspired pop track, more of a slow ballad. However, I’m still feeling this one. I love the words, the production, and the mere existence of this song on the album.
Numb takes us back into the dance zone. Its all about letting the feeling take over and not resisting. Going numb means staying still without a fight and allowing something else, something stronger to take over. The track screams freedom.
Lessons For My Lover dives back into the smooth and sexy r&b tunes we’re used to hearing from Usher back in the 90s. I definitely miss songs like these from the crooner, but I can accept where his music is today. He’s evolved, but this track reminds us that he’s still very much holding on to his r&b roots.
You don’t get anymore straightforward than the Sins of My Father. Listen to the words and you’ll understand the singer more. Its another serious track, but fortunately, Usher concludes on a happy note.
Euphoria is electrifying; Perfect for the clubs. I love his high ranges and how balanced his voice is on these heart-pumping beats. Usher, I commend you on your endless talents, and ability to deliver music that is timeless.
I.F.U. is a naughty continuation from Lil’ Freak. There’s no need to stress on the provocativeness of those kind of tracks.
Say The Words is 90s influenced groovy track with body bouncing bass. I love the hook.
2nd Round is the best song among the deluxe tracks. This is a mix between r&b and hip hop; the beat will blow up your stereo. Sexy for the ladies, jumping for the clubs, and catchy for mainstream. What more do you need?
Hot Thing closes things off on a grimy vibe. I love every single part of this track, but I have no idea who this A$AP Rocky is.
In conclusion, Looking 4 Myself demonstrates remarkable production and substantial lyrical content. Not to mention excellent vocal performance from the artist. This is Usher showing that he’s going no where anytime soon. Aren’t we all thrilled by that conclusion? I sure am.
My issue is with the album cover, while I love the artwork, the message is completely lost before my eyes. I guess I’m not quick enough to get its meaning. Is it suppose to convey the concept of “searching for something?”