Album review: Robin Thicke, Something Else

Robin Thicke

Something Else (released September 30, 2008)

You think you know Robin Thicke, but I bet you don’t.
Most know Thicke as the clean cut white dude who climbed the charts with “Lost Without U,” from his 2006 album The Evolution of Robin Thicke. But Thicke was around long before that.

He first showed up around ’02 as a long-haired hippie riding a bike around town in his first video, “When I Get You Alone,” which sampled “Fifth Of Beethoven” and quietly dropped his first album, A Beautiful World, in 2003. And when he returned a few years later, “Lost Without U” wasn’t even his first single – that honor goes to “Wanna Love You Girl.” I remember driving all over town searching for his Evolution album on release day. The wife found it a week later at a local shop; the shop only received two copies.

So I’ve had my eye on this guy ever since his meager beginnings and I know his strengths and weaknesses, both of which are glaring on his new release, Something Else.

If you’re of fan of Thicke’s tender falsetto, you’ll probably love “The Sweetest Love.” It’s the closest thing to “Lost Without U.” His voice is tailor-made for tracks like that, as well as “Cry No More,” where he just glides across the melody. It makes you wonder why more singers can’t pull that off – and it makes you wish T-Pain would choke on his Auto-Tune. The first single, “Magic,” shows that he can turn up the tempo when he wants, but unfortunately that doesn’t happen too often.

If Thicke has had one major weakness across all three albums is that he is often too laid back. His song “Dreamworld” is aptly named – I dare you to make it through the track without snoring. That’s too bad too, because his depiction of his perfect world (complete with people not giving him grief about his interracial marriage) is a good premise. And on “Shadow of Doubt,” the goofy ad-libs – another trademark – throw things off.

Something Else is equally imperfect and brilliant. And once you get to know him, you realize that it’s par the course for Thicke.

Best Tracks: Magic, The Sweetest Love, Ms. Harmony

3.5 stars out of 5

5 Comments

  1. I soo remember that video from ’02! lol his image has come a mighty long way..i almost wish he would’ve kept some of that image intact so that maybe he’d stand out a lil more and his music would be allowed to speak for itself..oh well, i ‘heart’ him anyway…

  2. I have been a Robin Thicke fan for years and I maintain that his first album was his best. When I first listened to “Something Else” I, honestly, wasn’t that impressed. But I listened a few times and with each listen I loved it more. Favorite songs include: Magic, Something Else, Loverman, and Cry No More. And I actually love Dreamworld too. It hasn’t put me to sleep yet. Edd, I think this album could grow on you too. You should listen to it some more. Oh yeah, you can’t because I’ve been holding it hostage in my car. Sorry.

  3. Mr. Music,
    What happened to the praise for “Tie my hands”? That’s my favorite by far…and I hate to admit it, but I like Lil Wayne…(I can appreciate the clean version of most of his stuff :)

  4. Recommendation for next review–Solange presents Sol Angel and the Hadley Street Dreams…I promise you’ll have everyone person in the office wondering why you’re bopping your head and snapping your fingers, lol.

    This album is BY FAR better than any Beyonce album or Destiny’s Child album. It has lyrics, creativity, talent, and originality. Solange is “no little sister.” Beyonce better be glad she got married, Jay can support her while she spends some time writing real music.

  5. Hmmm, if I can get my hands on it I might check out Solange. Although I must admit I don’t like her new video – Glittery Sandcastle Love, or something.

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