[Review] Reality Show-Jazmine Sullivan

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Jazmine Sullivan’s new album, Reality Show, dropped last week and I was at a lost for words when I first pushed play on my iPod. First let me say that I am glad that Jazmine Sullivan is back on the scene and giving us awesome vocals and range. Jazmine took some time off to sort out some things in personal life. In an interview she has stated that she was in an abusive relationship. Artists normally do their best work when they are in pain or going through something. Reality Show is a testament to that. The album is titled Reality Show because like me, Jazmine is a reality show junkie, JUDGE US!

Jazmine has innate way of melding 70’s, 80’s, 90’s and current music together. She did this on her last album and does something similar on this new album. The way I look at the album each song is like a reality show within itself. On each song Jazmine song tells a story that her audience can relate to. On Dumb, which features fellow Philly native Meek Mill, Jaz sings about calling her significant other out about cheating and lying. Mascara, is about “Instagram” models( I use model lightly) and their need to stay ahead of the game so the bags and shoes can keep coming. Brand New is a story that is very prevalent in the music industry. The ride or die chick that was there when said rapper/singer was posting music on sound cloud and performing at hole in the wall clubs ends up getting left behind for an “upgrade” when said rapper/singer makes it big. Silver Linings is the story of a father who goes to extreme measures(robbery) to provide for his family.

#Hoodlove is the Bonnie and Clyde Theme for 2015. Jazmine rides the driving beat of this song with her rich vocals until the GOTDAMN wheels falls off. She pretty much sums of the sentiments of ride or die chicks near and far, with the line, “He ain’t always right, but he’s just right for me.” Now, Let It Burn, is one of my favorite tracks off the album. This songs gives me a 90’s R&B feel, and Jaz sings her face off, and when she goes into her upper range the song is off the meters for me. Veins, is another favorite from the album, she sings about the feeling of love taking over her life and becoming a dangerous addiction. Love is a dangerous and volatile thing and Jazmine conveys that with this song. Forever Don’t Last, is a song that tells the after affects of that love she sang about on the previous song. She pretty much sums up the feelings that most feel after a break-up with the line, “I had high hopes for us baby…” Sometimes things just don’t work out the way we would like them, and that’s unfortunately a sad truth and sometimes a blessing in disguise. This song is another favorite of mine, her vocals give me goose bumps.

Stupid Girls, is cautionary tale, it gives me an Amy Winehouse vibe. To make a long story short Jazmine is telling women to use your damn brain, basically, ” Don’t be no dummy!” I like the song it is a different vibe from Sullivan, which is very refreshing. Stanley, gives me an updated disco vibe, Jazmine sings of being underappreciated by her man(Stanley). The best line of the song is, “Maybe take a b*tch to dinner” This song is another favorite of mine. It just goes to show she can switch up her style, and still keep her audience. Masterpiece(Mona Lisa), is an empowerment anthem about loving ones-self. Jazmine covers this topic with masterfully. There has to come a point where everyone has to see themselves as a work of art. If You Dare, is another empowerment song about not being afraid to live your life. I like the song it’s a great way to close out the album.

Reality Show seamlessly covers several eras of music, but still manages not to sound dated. Jazmine is one of the few artist that is able to do this, Fantasia would be another.  After Jazmine’s long hiatus from the music industry, this album was great way to re-introduce herself. She clearly didn’t miss a beat, and it seems that her personal issues have inspired a cohesive body of work. The track order, lyrical content, vocals,production, and varying styles make this a album great. As always form your own opinion about music and in general, but this album is a must have!

Final Rating 5/5

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