Monday, November 9, 2009

Mariah Carey 'Memoirs Of An Imperfect Angel' Album Review

After working with The-Dream and Tricky Stewart on her 18th Billboard Hot 100 number 1 “Touch My Body,” the 20 year veteran diva decided to create an entire album with the current production duo; whose been creating hits for many artists. Mariah Carey’s twelfth studio album Memoirs Of An Imperfect Angel was released via Island Def Jam on September 29th.

To set the summer off right, Mariah Carey released the fiery “Obsessed,” which found the singer making not so subtle jabs at an unnamed male; thought to be rapper Eminem. The lead single features Carey’s auto tuned vocals, singing over a thumping bass filled track. Mariah shows she’s not holding back as she declares “you a mom and pop, I’m a corporation; I’m the press conference, you a conversation,” regarding this mystery man who’s obsessed with her.

Separating from the more up-tempo Mariah Carey, Mariah covers Foreigner’s “I Want To Know What Love Is,” as the second release from Memoirs. The cover definitely tires to take Mariah Carey fans back to her big ballad glory days, but fails to make a lasting impression as a single, such as her 1989 debut “Vision Of Love.” The covered tune nicely features a gospel choir backing Carey to help her close out the song and album.

While Memoirs Of An Imperfect Angel was initially thought to bring Mariah fans back to her classic 90s sound, Memoirs fails to do so in great amount. Though the albums standout track, “Angles Cry” could be considered an attempt to do so. Carey even still manages to give a dose of her ability to still hold a note as “Angels Cry,” ends. Carey carries a similar feisty attitude from 2005s “Don’t Forget About Us,” on “Up Out My Face.” The most memorable line from the song has got to be when Carey states, “even if we were two Lego blocks, even the Harvard University graduating class of 2010, couldn’t even put us back together again.”

The albums main creative team Carey, The-Dream, and Tricky Stewart seem to embark Memoirs as an advertisement more so than an album filled with deep lyrics. The album features a great deal of gimmicky lyrics, which seem to advertise products and services rather offer signature exemplary Mariah songs. On “The Impossible” Carey sings “love you like kool-aid…love you like a Holiday Duncan Hines yellow cake.” Another example of the almost child like lyrics, is heard on “More Than Just Friends.” Where Carey sings, “Steady feenin’ for you like them fries at McDonald’s, I wanna be all up on your lips like gelato (ice cream).” Lyrics like these don’t allow Carey seem true to her age (39) or let her mature as a lyricist.

The album cut, “H.A.T.E.U.” which quickly became a fan favorite is Memoirs proposed third single. Throughout “H.A.T.E.U.” Carey proves that she still has great vocal control, by entering her whistle register, which suits the song well. The title which is actual an acronym for Having A Typical Emotional Upset, explains the songs meaning extremely well; about a relationship that’s has ran its course and starting to fizzle out, as the narrator prepares for heartbreak.

While Memoirs Of An Imperfect Angel will leave devote Mariah Carey fans, (AKA Lambs) ecstatic, the album doesn’t offer much for others. Memoirs is filled with a bunch of mid-tempos and ballads but as a whole the album seems a bit rushed. It seems as though Mariah is at her best when her albums are released after her musical breaks. Even though Memoirs Of An Imperfect Angel isn’t comparable to older Mariah materiel, Mariah still manages to add great songs to her 20 year and counting catalog.

Mariah Carey in 2009, recreating the 1997 photo shoot an cover of Butterfly.

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