From the first piano chords into ("I see you drivin' around town with a girl I know. I'm like F**k You!") He had us hooked with a curious fascination of what is to come and refreshment in what could be found as vulgar. Vulgarity being made endearing and with an artist givin' us the truth of the art he wants to do with some juicy goodness.
Cee Lo Green dropped this gem "The Lady Killer" on us back on Nov. 9, 2010. First seeing the video and hearing the single from the summer of the smash F**k You or Forget You (for those easily offended) only engaged you to want more. Finding yourself asking where will he go on his own again, what has he learned, and what does he want to create after Gnarls Barkley. You find old school sensibility with nothing being forgotten with clear notable textures of todays modern digital age. It delivers with simple but intelligent lyrics using Cee Lo's signature voicings, the shrill low alto that skips down to tenor back up to majestic falsetto. Then you find yourself in a richly soul classic themed album that evokes everything of being a "Lady Killer" while your buddy Cee Lo smiles and says F**K YOU! You smile back and say lets roll.
With a simple monologue of where he stands, the curtain opens with a fast paced James Bond type thrill scene intro, The Lady Killer Theme. Next the good times begin with ...
...Bright Lights Bigger City a definatively 80's type of groove.
Next you find yourself, swaying, clapping and smililing to another feel gooder F**k You.
Off to another 80's feeling song, like a mid tempo pop song. A song that gets that Philly soul sound like Hall and Oates that still grabs a bit of the Motown feel in the hook. Using a clssic tron-like synth and a sophisticated vocal arrangement with voicings matching all over the place keeping you inclined to listen while being pleasantly entertained.
Bodies begins in hollow vocals, a syncopated snare rythm, a harmon muted trumpet and a bass sliding up on the second note. Cee-Lo's easy flow finding his shrill along, lady whispers, with marcato strings makes this song one sexy MF. 4 sho! Nonetheless found in the macabre and marose a sexy story of a body.
"BABY! Baby..." sang by Lauren Bennett opens up the next number Love Gun, a mid tempoed thrill sound song. Grabbing a sample once heard on Bittersweet's "The Mating Game" You find lyrical enduendo between a powerful sultry Lauren Bennet and Cee-Lo doing what he does. With a big sounding, unrelenting funk, you taste everybit of this number's dark seediness. So much that it was used in a seedy scene with Steve Carrell & Tina Fey in the movie Date Night.
Satisfied, I Want You, and Cry Baby is a sweet 60's pop feeling intermission with horns that make you want to smile. It makes you think of stage plays like Hair and bands like the Fifth Deminsion. Warm bright sun easy melodies with memorable vocals singing in Satisfied. Next on to a Cee-Lo solo song I Want You that exemplifies the coolness and ease of his vocal itterations. With more of the same found in Cry Baby and you finding yourself in love with this perfect late Saturday afternoon song. All holding very uplifting direction. Which still keeps you in the midst of happy thoughts. ..
...and then he drops the jam Fool For You featuring Phillip Bailey. A sure throwback of Earth Wind and Fire akin of the slow jams of bands like Switch and Lakeside. I'm a fool in love. This ditty gets you hook, line and sinker with a soulfulness that gets you slowly twitching in your seat. That is if you like those type of grinders. This is a goode one.
Its OK. Is early Motown and good too. A complete song covering all the classic voicing and melodies that are OK. Utilizing organs, chimes, vibes, strings, guitar, and even a tambourine shaking out 16ths.
Then we get to some more deep soul, with hints of gospel spirit in Old Fashioned. Reminding you of your first slow dance. It has basic pedestrian movements in the arrangement which is all that is needed along with a simple marcato string progression. It is an arrangement that has 70's basic soul song witha lil bit of Smoke In Your Eyes type of 50s feel. A unique and pleasant tune.
Finally, arriving at No One's Gonna Love You a quick mid-tempo bass drone jam. It hosts a 70's pop-feel hook that is easy to latch on too. Lightly hearing LP crackle in the background. With a basic light rock funk beat recorded with hints of lo-fi or maybe an attempt to sound likewise. With the strings still there intelligent and being used approriately.
Next you are at the Lady Killer Outro, which lets you feel and know that you have just been taken on a specific journey, on all different types of levels. You realize the showmanship and the talent of which you have been made witness, in that which mirrors a most enriching show to have had experienced. You're clapping and saying thank you. Almost saddened for there is no encore and then you remember "Oh yeah, I got The Lady Killer (Deluxe Version). This is where you find the bonus track Everybody Loves You a quick paced happy romp with flanged guitar, basic bass line, and a tight drum machine beat and sweet girl backing harmonies on the hook of another good Saturday song. Even throwin in are some na na na na na's. Yep. Then you are given the sophisticated regal Scarlett Fever easily a favorite and off the chain, creative and smart. A vocal arrangement and performance that is so lush and on point that you cant help but be a bit thrown back. Although easy to listen to; so much music is dropped on this number. It could exhaust you. This one's good. Also thrown in on the deluxe is the Le Castle Vania Remix of F**K You a fun 80s sounding electro romp. 80's melodic fun even with chorused guitar chicka chicka chang changs.
This album is a fantastic exhibition of music, emotion and fun. A thumbs up. A gazillion stars. One of the few that come out that you can listen to the whole album more than once if not over and over again. Let's welcome back the good times and let em roll. Props to Cee-Lo for bringing back good feelings and smiles.