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DAR Music: 7 R&B Albums Released In 2010

By @TrueGodImmortal

It has been almost 9 years since the beginning of this decade and time has flown by. Remember what you were doing at the start of the decade? It seems like time goes by so quickly, as artists have been through different periods, fallen off, and more. Today, we take a look at the albums that came out in the R&B genre that year and discuss whether they were classics, great listens, or if they could have been better. Which albums did we pick? Let's take a look.

*Sade- Soldier Of Love

-So, as time passed, Sade was roaming the world without any new music to her name for years and years. 10 years to be exact. When the year started, she had an album on deck and while many people were expecting a classic, I was unsure. When I heard this album, I was still unsure. I mean, this album is far from bad, but it pales in comparison to her previous classic albums. That is something that shocked me to an extent, as I expected Sade to deliver an album that was classic upon a 10 year hiatus. However, this album still has a number of enjoyable highlights. The album would be a commercial success as well, selling over 500,000 copies the first week and putting Sade back at the top of the music game and it would be certified double platinum shortly after in an era of down sales. As far as the songs here, Sade shines on "Babyfather", "The Moon And The Sky", "Bring Me Home", "Be That Easy", and "Skin". With it being almost 9 years since the last album and Sade dropping songs for films, could a new album be on the horizon? Time will tell.

*R. Kelly- Love Letter

-How do you bounce back after albums of sexual based nonsense and more chatter about your deviant behavior? By changing your style and image up for a two album period. As it goes, R. Kelly attempted to reinvent himself and did so via this album, which was interesting to say the least. Being more chivalrous and respectful on this project, the self proclaimed king of R&B actually sounds better than expected on tracks like "When A Woman Loves", "Love Letter", "Lost In Your Love", and more. This album went gold, which was a continuation of put the stop to the platinum run that he was on (Untitled began it), but this was still an enjoyable listen, just different from the R. Kelly albums we were used to.

*Bilal- Airtight's Revenge

-One of my favorite artists in the genre, Bilal has gone without getting the credit he truly deserves. His first two albums were classics and though one (his second) was never officially released, it is one of the best R&B albums of the 2000s. With his third official project and release, Bilal sounds comfortable once again, making classics left and right with a beautiful Neo-Soul sound backing him. The highlights of this album are "Cake and Eat It Too", "Levels", "Restart", "Who Are You", and "Little One". All in all, this is a very solid album that was beyond enjoyable and perhaps the best album of the year in the genre.

*Jazmine Sullivan- Love Me Back

-So, Jazmine comes back with her second studio album after a very successful first release. She is one of the most amazing voices in music and the genre and while her debut lingers around classic status, her sophomore project is an album that showcases honesty and growth as an artist, just like it should be. Her songwriting improved and her command of her voice was even stronger, as evidenced by songs such as "Holding You Down", "10 Seconds", "Don't Make Me Wait", and "Redemption". All in all, this album is a highlight on the year for the genre as Jazmine delivers once again.

*Trey Songz- Passion, Pain, Pleasure

-So, after the success of his album Ready, which is his first platinum project, Trey was in prime position to showcase to the world what it is he does best. However, the question was simple. Was Ready's success going to continue and translate into the next album and could Trey manage to reach higher heights on the next go round? Well, yes and no. Trey would find commercial success, but this album felt a bit more cluttered than the previous releases, a clear sign he was aiming for the charts again. While the album would reach platinum, there are a number of songs that can be done without and the singles on this project are pretty subpar. Still, songs such as "Love Faces", "Alone", "Made To Be Together", and "Red Lipstick" are solid listens, along with the hilarious "Doorbell". Trey delivers a solid album, it just needed to be trimmed down just a little bit.

*Usher- Raymond v. Raymond

-So, Usher would experience a moment of failure in some way with his 2008 releass Here I Stand, which was met with much resistance from the audience due to his newfound love and marriage. Well, as it would turn out, that situation wouldn't last too long and Usher would find himself back at square one essentially as evidenced by the teaser single that started this album campaign on "Papers". With that knowledge, the album shines with other songs that fit this often revisited theme of one side versus the other, but also could standout on their own. Usher has pop dreams on the surprisingly catchy "O.M.G.", but sticks to what we knew him for on other tracks like "There Goes My Baby", "Mars vs Venus", and "Making Love (Into The Night)". Usher delivers on this album, but it still pales in comparison to his work pre-Confessions.

*Erykah Badu- New Amerykah Part 2: Return Of The Ankh

-So, the standout thing about this album is rooted in the video for the single "Window Seat", which featured Badu stripping down to nothing and walking down the street. While that was a lovely sight to behold, and a great song as well, the rest of this album has a special place for me. Badu takes a different direction than the first part of the New Amerykah series and gives a fresh feel to her music. The production is slightly more upbeat than the darker vibe of part 1 and Badu shines on tracks such as "20 Feet Tall", "Umm Hmm", "Love", and more. If I had to pick a favorite album from this year, this is right up there and might take the no. 1 spot on this list easily.


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