It’s been days since the release of Frank Ocean’s highly anticipated sophomore album, Blonde. It has almost been a week since the release and it's already the topic of social media conversations for winning a Grammy. While the majority of the public is in love with the album, I’m not.
Frank Oceans' 2012 debut album, Channel Orange was a dive into his "mainstream" creative genius. Unlike his previous mixtapes, Frank's writing truly reigned supreme. Although it was dark in nature, the lyrical content and story line of Channel Orange resonated with his early fan base. It was a breath of fresh air to be overwhelmed by the essoteric song topics, titles and unique, unforgettable melodies. Stand out tracks "Lost," "Super Rich Kids," "Forrest Gump" and his lead single, "Thinking About You" garnered Franks core following, winning him his first Grammy before his unfortunate four- year hatius left his fans unfulfilled and musically helpless.
So, if you’re anything like me, you might be confused by Blonde. I know that the album was just released and you want to love it as much as Channel Orange, but I’m here to tell you that it's okay if you don’t. You’ve probably been asked a million times if you like Blonde and you sit there unsure of what to say because you don’t want to sound like an outcast. Let me assure you that there are others like you.
My first encounter with Blonde was through the provocative and perplexing music video for "Nike's." I was so confused by the visuals that my only option was to watch it again. And to be completely honest, I'm not a huge fan of it. Although songs "Pink+White," "Nights," "Futura Free" and "White Ferrari" catch my attention, the rest of the album left me feeling otherwise. No part of me wanted him to put out a "Channel Orange 2." I expected him to grow as an artist. In fact, Frank Ocean did grow in a very underwhelming tone with "Blonde".
While the majority of consumers are praising Blonde, you're sitting back wondering what version they must be listening to. People were just naturally hungry for some new Frank Ocean tracks. We've heard him on Beyonce's "Beyonce" as well as Kanye's "The Life of Pablo." We've even seen him at the Yeezy SZN 3 premiere at MSG a couple of months ago and we all sat back and wondered what he was up to. With all the promotion and hype, did the album live up to our expectations?
I think it's important to give it a fair chance. I've personally played the album a couple of times and the light bulb hasn't gone off for me yet. I do enjoy some songs on the album but not the project as a whole. The important thing is to come into this project with a open mind and the willingness to accept that this isn't Channel Orange, this is a different Frank.