Beyoncé revolutionizes her sound for “RENAISSANCE.”
HONORABLE MENTION. CUFF IT
I predict that “CUFF IT” will be one of the biggest singles from this album. “CUFF IT” features a blend of raucous and pleasant sounds. In the song, over a funk instrumental, Beyoncé brings out her most ambitious and vibrant vocals to let the world know that she’s ready to get f**ked up for whatever needs to be celebrated. Like, if you just cleaned the hell out of your bathtub, Beyoncé is ready to get f**ked up in honor of that. Overall, I just feel this song is too energetic to push aside.
5. PURE HONEY
I knew this honey tea I was drinking tasted brainwashy.
For 75% of this song, Beyoncé sounds like the voice that factory workers hear over intercoms. She comes across as cold, demanding, and like a seasoned pimp. The good news is this: She eventually morphs into a vivacious saleswoman that is intent on peddling her sweet sweet honey to us. What’s interesting is that the song’s eventual landing place gives me Coming To America vibes.
Who the f**k thought they could tell Beyoncé she isn’t that chick?
Though a good chunk of this album is dedicated to women, I think everyone can relate to the words Beyoncé speaks here. In “HEATED,” she talks about understanding your worth and stiff-arming those who refuse to bow down to you. I think the song has a level of gentleness that is charming, a good punch, and a part that makes me want to be that one dude that does too damn much in sweaty clubs.
3. AMERICA HAS A PROBLEM
America has several problems; this song is not one of those problems…
If Beyoncé isn’t wearing MC Hammer pants in the music video to this song, I would be very disappointed. In the song, she does major work over an instrumental that would give the “U Can’t Touch This” beat a run for its money. Not only does she hit us with fiery raps that insinuate that she is human crack, but she also hits us with very alluring vocals. The way Beyoncé hopscotches between the two sounds is borderline legendary.
If I were to guess, “AMERICA GOT A PROBLEM” is about making your partner become addicted to you by utilizing your genitals.
An energetic Beyoncé is a dangerous Beyoncé.
“ENERGY” is meant to f**k your mind up. Like, I literally had to tell myself that I didn’t take a weed brownie while I was listening to the song. Beyoncé’s lyrics are unchained, Beyoncé’s vocals are beautiful, Beyoncé’s raps are both gritty and cold, BEAM’s contributions feel hella intoxicating, and the beat sounds like it’s being poked by a stick while trying to breakdance. I need someone to tell me what I just heard…
1. BREAK MY SOUL
“BREAK MY SOUL” is the song of the summer, right?
“BREAK MY SOUL” features an uptempo house beat that you would hear only in H&Ms and fancy brunches. It also features stunning vocals and explosive rap deliveries that make Beyoncé’s lyrics about resiliency and reaching greatness illuminate. All in all, I believe that “BREAK MY SOUL” is definitely special.
SONG BY SONG BREAKDOWN
1. I’M THAT GIRL (4.5/5)
2. COZY (4.5/5)
3. ALIEN SUPERSTAR (4/5)
4. CUFF IT (4.5/5)
5. ENERGY (5/5)
6. BREAK MY SOUL (5/5)
7. CHURCH GIRL (4/5)
8. PLASTIC OFF THE SOFA (4.5/5)
9. VIRGO’S GROOVE (3.5/5)
10. MOVE (4/5)
11. HEATED (5/5)
12. TIQUE (4/5)
13. ALL UP IN YOUR MIND (3/5)
14. AMERICA HAS A PROBLEM (5/5)
15. PURE HONEY (5/5)
16. SUMMER RENAISSANCE (4/5)
TOTAL: 69.5/80 = 86%
This is empowerment music. Throughout RENAISSANCE, Beyoncé props up women (Particularly black women) in ways that I’ve never heard before. She embraces their bodies, personalities, decisions, beliefs, tempers, and statures. She comes across as the ultimate ally.
This is multi-layered music. You are probably used to hearing hip-hop and pop fusions in your daily life; throughout RENAISSANCE, you get concoctions that blend African, runway, R&B, and dance vibes. Most songs on this album practically change faces more than Renee Zellwegger. You might feel somber at the beginning of one, and end up feeling like you can rule the world.
This is music that should be nominated for both an Oscar and Grammy. Obviously, the music on this album is f**king amazing, but can we applaud Beyoncé’s acting performances? I love how she plays a partier, a tyrant, a single woman, a motivational speaker, a best friend, and the ultimate advocate throughout RENAISSANCE. So many people believe that you are supposed to be the best singer in the world; no, you just have to be someone who makes decent enough music but also knows how to fully connect with people (I want to be clear that the music is amazing on this album).
No, Beyoncé doesn’t adjust to the sounds of today; you’re supposed to adjust to Beyoncé’s sound. No, you are not supposed to doubt Beyoncé. No, you’re not supposed to question Beyoncé. Yes, you are supposed to love on your women!
Quincy is the creator of Ratings Game Music. He loves writing about music, taking long walks on beaches, and spaghetti that fights him back.