A good friend of mine loves Bleu. So when I poo-pooed Bleu’s 2009 album, A Watched Pot I had to answer to him. I dismissed A Watched Pot as “nothing more than easy listening fodder.” So I was apprehensive to take the opportunity to review Bleu’s new album, Four, but luckily Bleu made it a little easier on me.
There has never been a discussion of if Bleu is talented or not; he obviously is. My problem with A Watched Pot was the songwriting seemed a little bland and personality-less to me. All the interviews leading up to the release of Four affirmed to me that this record would be different. Bleu uttered phrases like “I made this record just for me” and the album’s promotional spiel called it his “highly personal new album.” That personal touch pays off in a big way on Four.
The album kicks off with “Singin’ In Tongues” which really sets the mood for the album. The album sees Bleu act as the male Amy Winehouse. His versatile voice is backed by neo-soul horn section and full choir. The song musically soars but lyrically it feels like a vast improvement from A Watched Pot. Bleu playfully sings “I was stumblin’ down first avenue/feelin’ second class crass from my head to my booze.”
The playful lyrics with an autobiographical twist continue on “B.O.S.T.O.N.” On the track, Bleu sings “I was born in Green Bay/Gre up in VA/I moved out to L.A./and for now I’m gonna stay/but if you ask me where I’m from/Boston.” Perhaps this resounds with me because I am a Boston guy but the track just feels like Bleu opening up to his fans like never before.
The entire album has that open feeling to it. Musically I think the album is Bleu’s best yet and lyrically it shows a new maturity.
MP3: Bleu “Singin’ In Tongues”