Album: Beyoncé, I Am ... Sasha Fierce, (Columbia)
Not such an independent woman after all
Sunday 16 November 2008
In the build-up to 'I Am ... Sasha Fierce', Beyoncé's cheerleaders have been keen to stress that she is in a different "place" now. One can only assume she's moved house, because in any figurative sense, the singer is exactly where she already was.
She gets prime songwriting credit on every song, but she's backed up by heavyweights such as Ryan Tedder (Leona Lewis's "Bleeding Love") and Amanda Ghost (James Blunt's "You're Beautiful"). The team of producers, too, is big enough to crew a nuclear sub. It therefore ends up like every other megastar album nowadays, packed with depressingly lucrative balladry such as "If I Was A Boy". Add the social conservatism of "Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)" and God-bothering goo such as "Ave Maria", not to mention unrequired dictionary rewriting on "Diva" ("A diva is a female version of a hustler..."), and the result is a real stinker. Time for Beyonce to really move over to a different "place", and make way for lil' sis Solange.
Pick of the Album: If you absolutely must: 'Radio'
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Review: One Direction, Fourmusic
Review: The World of Ice and Firebooks
Film More romcom than S&M
Review: The Imitation Gamefilm
Comedy...to show her mastectomy scars
TVNetflix gets cryptic
TV review A moving film showing kids too busy to enjoy their youth
Books Not even a Man Booker prize could save Richard Flanagan from a nomination
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 'Not suppost to cry': 9-year-old lists the worst things about being a boy
- 2 'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
- 3 Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
- 4 Lana Del Rey rape video: Marilyn Manson denies involvement in shocking leaked footage
- 5 Largest ever study into the gay gene 'erodes the notion that sexual orientation is a choice'
Lee Evans announces his retirement from comedy on The Jonathan Ross Show
Iggy Azalea responds to Eminem rape lyrics: 'I'm bored of old men threatening young women'
Angelina Jolie confirms retirement from acting: 'I've never been comfortable on-screen'
Lana Del Rey rape video: Marilyn Manson denies involvement in shocking leaked footage
Willow and Jaden Smith talk duality of apples, holographic realities and the melancholia of the ocean in incredible New York Times interview
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
'Muslims pre-date Columbus in discovering America,' says Turkish president Erdogan
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
France 'blocks' Russian sailors from boarding a warship
Former Tory PM Sir John Major says 'we would not have an NHS without migrants'