Friday, September 03, 2010

JoJo Comes Out of the 'Dark' and Into the Light

Oh my, JoJo. It's been a long and tiring wait for new material from the teenage songbird and golden-throated prodigy since her 2006 sophomore album The High Road ("Anytime" was my jam, and I'm still irritated for it not being promoted properly...::side eyes::). Homegirl has stated several times through her various social networking outlets her frustration in the pace of third album, titled All I Ever Wanted, now ambiguously slated for 2011. The sheer amount of material she's recorded since 2006 is kind of surreal, much of which has surfaced online (including the brilliantly poppy and tongue-in-cheek "25 to Life"), which kind of explains why she is planning to go the mixtape route prior to All I Ever Wanted seeing release.

The mixtape, Can't Take That Away From Me, is set for "release" this Tuesday through, and will feature brand new songs all written or co-written by Ms. Levesque, including the viral single, "(I Only Know Him) In the Dark". Three of the confirmed to be featured were produced by Chad Hugo of The Neptunes fame.

While "(I Only Know Him) In the Dark" sounds a bit daunting at first, and indeed it's lightyears away from the tune that made her famous, once you let it wash over you, I find it a surprising but welcomed shift in sound. We've heard whispers of the song since December of 2009 (wasn't kidding about the ridiculous pace of career for an artist as talented as she), and it very much holds up to the hype.

As suggested in the title, the song is a slinky, dark, minimalist kind of slow-jam with tinkling piano and minimal autotune (for effect rather than necessity and that is a supreme difference). JoJo is all grown up now, thank you very much, but she doesn't shove her sexuality down our throats like so many other tweenage poptarts attempting to make the lucrative transition to adult (and therefore "serious") artist (Dear Miley Cyrus, ...). The oozes with a demure kind of sensuality that she started to hint at in her previous albums, but never once do you question those vocals as they remain the foremost star of the show.

Although, I must admit, I'm not exactly feeling that Intro to Fonts cover art. Eh, they can't all be winners.


Lilly said...

i have missed jojo :)

Poster Girl said...

This song is irresistible. Not at all what you'd expect from her, but it's the perfect way to grow up--dark, sensual, a little might make it difficult for any of the other material on the mixtape to follow up to it, though I hope some does.

Follow Me on Instagram via @melismaticdiva