dvsn – Working On My Karma (Album Review)
dvsn are juicy, blunt, messy, petty, manipulative, and romantic in “Working On My Karma.”
5. What’s Up
dvsn must be getting advice from Tristan Thompson.
In “What’s Up,” Daniel sings about sending a text to someone he knows damn well he shouldn’t be talking to. The song, which was produced by both Jermaine Dupri and Bryan-Michael Cox, boasts a slow-burning instrumental, hollering that the Tyreses of the world can appreciate, and great wingman work from Jagged Edge (Remember them?).
4. Don’t Take Your Love
“Don’t Take Your Love” sounds like some Frankie Lymon-type s**t.
“Don’t Take Your Love” sounds like it was made in the 60s (OK, that’s a bit of an exaggeration. It sounds like it was made in the 70s). Don’t worry, folks were messy back then, too. Over old-school production that frolics along gingerly, Daniel does more begging than a homeless person about making things right with his woman. His excuses coincide very nicely with his combination of soothing and explosive vocals. If Daniel wants his woman back, “Don’t Take Your Love” is a great start.
3. Stay Faithful
dvsn say that faithfulness is the new black in “Stay Faithful.”
In “Stay Faithful,” Daniel lets it be known that the best decision he could make in a relationship is to be faithful; even though he was tapping someone else that he almost got pregnant. Though the song has a lot of pleas being copped and uber passionate vocals, it also boasts an uptempo instrumental that actually has some feel-good vibes attached to it. Interesting, right?
2. If I Get Caught
“You wouldn’t want me if I didn’t have hoes” is a crazy way to start a track…
Real ones will tell you that one of Jay-Z’s best tracks is “Song Cry.” In the song, he raps about recklessly doing his girl wrong. For “If I Get Caught,” dvsn takes one of the coldest bars from “Song Cry” and makes a full song out of it.
This is probably dvsn’s most peculiar track of all time. It features an unorthodox rhythm and a weirdly-placed Jay-Z sample. I do think these two things are great about the song, though: The passionate vocals and the content (The never-ending battle between being faithful and a dog is discussed here). While women may bat an eye at this track, I think males all over the globe will say “see, dvsn are just like me!”
Honestly, dvsn should’ve asked Beyoncé if they could use Jay-Z’s sample…
1. Take It Slow
“Take It Slow” features the second-best sample on this album.
I’m not going to lie, I really like the energy attached to “Take It Slow.” The song is powered by this uptempo R&B beat that has a sample from John Legend’s legendary “Ordinary People” track. Over the beat, Daniel sings about finding a way to be on the same page as his woman sexually. More than anything, I think this is one of the tracks from the album that clubs and freaky-ass folks will love.
SONG BY SONG BREAKDOWN
1. Last Time (Ft. BLEU) (Ft. 3.5/5)
2. Bring It (4/5)
3. If I Get Caught (4.5/5)
4. Stay Faithful (4.5/5)
5. What’s Up (4.5/5)
6. Don’t Take Your Love (5/5)
7. Hatin (4/5)
8. Policy (4/5)
9. Take It Slow (5/5)
10. Daniel’s Interlude (3.5/5)
11. Tired (4/5)
12. Get Even (3.5/5)
For all you women that watch Housewives shows, this album is the male version of that.
Working On My Karma is a full R&B experience, and that is mainly because of the production. Nineteen95 made sure to hand Daniel Daley slow-burning, uptempo, smooth, and soulful instrumentals. Since Daniel is the definition of a professional singer, he meets each instrumental at the rim.
Jagged Edge and BLEU play Daniel’s wingmen on this album. While I love how Jagged Edge added an extra level of soul to “What’s Up,” BLEU’s gritty verse helped give the album some edge. All in all, I am glad that dvsn didn’t add a bunch of people that didn’t fit on this album.
Daniel can sing his ass off. Throughout Working On My Karma, he gifts us everything from cool to emotional to timeless-sounding vocal performances. His versatility is on point. While ladies might not love the content Daniel dishes out throughout, they have to respect his vocals.
Honestly, I wish there were a few more uptempo tracks on the album. I feel like those were the songs in which the duo sounded a little more creative and free. With that being said, ironically, “Take It Slow” is the one song I downloaded to my iTunes library immediately.
The main reason you should listen to this album is that It tackles relationships in a way that is extremely raw. The way Daniel speaks on the s**t we are all thinking in our heads when it comes to affinities is impressive. When you package the juicy content with high-quality vocals and impactful R&B beats, you get magic.
Quincy is the creator of Ratings Game Music. He loves writing about music, taking long walks on beaches, and spaghetti that fights him back.