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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Frank Ocean - The Discovery Channel
By the time Frank Ocean made his recent broadcast television debut on the Jimmy Fallon show performing the epic "Bad Religion" the secret was out and so was Frank. His admission in a recent letter on tumbir.com that he was bi-sexual finally dragged hip hop with its often vicious homophobia screaming into the 21st century and hopefully the whole horrible fašade of...
Published on 15 July 2012 by Red on Black

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3.0 out of 5 stars Overhyped album
Dont get me wrong, there's nothing really bad here but its certainly not the amazing album that the reviews i have read claimed it was. Not a classic by any stretch of the imagination.
Published 17 months ago by James Weeden


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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Frank Ocean - The Discovery Channel, 15 July 2012
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Red on Black - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
By the time Frank Ocean made his recent broadcast television debut on the Jimmy Fallon show performing the epic "Bad Religion" the secret was out and so was Frank. His admission in a recent letter on tumbir.com that he was bi-sexual finally dragged hip hop with its often vicious homophobia screaming into the 21st century and hopefully the whole horrible fašade of hyper-masculinity associated with the genre crumbles with it. What is as important as Ocean's letter is the fact that he has talent to spare and then more, as such "Channel Orange" sees the birth of a new and potentially huge star.

"Channel Orange" is much more than a hip hop album. It fits easily into an R&B framework and within its grooves are jazz, soul and rapping. It also is interspersed with musical fragments and interludes alia Kanye West (who Ocean has recorded with) where ideas literally spill over. The recent review in the Observer accurately describes an album where "beats run on after melodies recede, lonely guitars twang away in the margins, soundscapes overlap. The album, like the mixtape, is broken up with bursts of radio static, fragments of conversation, juddering tape-deck click". And yet at the core of Ocean's work are great songs. The sumptuous R&B ballad "Thinkin bout you" brings a huge burst of summer sun shining brightly into the dour pre Olympic grey of a British summer. The best days of Stevie Wonder are recalled on the pulsating beauty of "Sweet Life" one of the albums standouts where Ocean's vocals are at their best and throughout you can hear traces of other greats such as Al Green, Prince and Marvin Gaye. As with these artists Ocean is not afraid to tackle social issues. "Super Rich Kids" with Earl Sweat has a "Benny and Jets" style pounding backdrop on a song infused with pointed commentary on the class system in California. Equally the self explanatory "Crack Rock" talks of "smoking stones in abandoned homes" and the decent into drug hell. The big centrepiece of the album is the near 10 minute long "Pyramids" where Ocean throws in Tangerine Dream synths, lyrical references to Cheetahs and Cleopatra and a John Mayer guitar solo. It is where he shows his true potential on one of the best songs of 2012. The aforementioned "Bad Religon" is a big hymn like song where Ocean regrets "This unrequited love/ To me it's nothing but a one man cult and cyanide in my styrofoam cup/ I could never make him love me." Other great songs pepper the album not least "Pink Matter" with Andre 3000, the excellent "Monks" and the soulful "Forest Gump".

In a year that has already seen the superb invention of Death Grips much harder Public Enemy orientated "The Money Store" the release of "Channel Orange" represents more of soulful slow burn albeit it is highly commercial in parts. It is difficult not to swept up in the hype surrounding the release of "Channel Orange" with the Daily Telegraph calling it "magical" and the Times describing it as "astonishing". Frankly in terms of sheer invention it doesn't quite match "My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy" and has a tough competitor in 2012 with the THEESatisfaction's "Awe Naturale" Yet it makes up for this with a set of songs destined to become recognised classics. Frank Ocean has served up a great album in "Channel Orange" and in the last analysis we would do well to worry less about his private life and concentrate more on his mercurial talent. What do think?
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28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Album of 2012...so far., 18 July 2012
This review is from: Channel Orange (Audio CD)
Right we all know the story of the letter that Frank posted up on tumblr so lets just forget about that for a few moments and actually focus solely on the music and the fantastic album we have before us.

For starters with an album of 17 tracks, Frank really is spoiling us. One thing that is obvious right from the start of listening to Channel ORANGE is that the production quality here is simply fantastic and is something that many other R'n'B artists really lack. It is no secret that Frank has always been a quality producer and composer but Channel ORANGE really shows off just how good he is and I can tell you that taking some time out and listening to this through a good pair of headphones is more than worth it.

Right onto the music itself. The format of Channel ORANGE is similar to that of his 2011 mixtape Nostalgia, Ultra whereby the tracks are often broken up by the sound of computer games and the sound of a skipping tape. The first real track is Thinkin Bout You which has been around for a while and is an excellent start to the album and it is easy to see how it relates to Frank 'coming out' earlier this year. The next three tracks are fairly standard Frank Ocean tracks but that doesn't mean that they are poor songs they are actually still of greater quality than most R'n'B singers around these days. The next standout track is Super Rich Kids which is another fantastic mix of quality production with clever lyrics and a verse from Earl Sweatshirt which will continue to grow on you I can guarantee it. Next up are Pilot Jones and Crack Jones which are two excellent chilled out tracks.

Pyramids is really where the album goes to another level! A 10 minute masterpiece which needs to be heard rather than me describing it which would just not do it any justice. Next with no holds barred Frank drops Lost which is another album highlight that has one of the finest hooks in urban music over the past 10 years at least. The instrumental track White with John Mayer allows to break up the pure high quality songs that fill up the last 6 spaces on the album and it is a nice chilled out track that showcases a little bit of John Mayer's brilliance with a guitar in his hand. The last four songs of Monks, Bad Religion, Pink Matter and Forrest Gump are excellent examples of just how good a lyricist Frank Ocean is and they have meaning behind them that many listeners will really appreciate. These four songs perfectly finish the album off in true style.

Overall I believe this to be the best album of 2012 so far and I wouldn't be surprised to find myself thinking it was the best album of the year as we head into 2013. So basically, go out, buy a copy, crack on the headphones and reap the benefits.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Album of the year 2012, 16 Feb 2013
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This review is from: Channel Orange (Audio CD)
Amazing!!! I must have listened to it every day for 6 months. 0one of the best albums for a while....
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Album of 2012, 23 Jan 2013
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Love every track on the album, highlights are Thinking bout you, and Lost. Recommend this to any RnB lovers, good for easy listening.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beyond all expectations, 26 Dec 2012
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This review is from: Channel Orange (Audio CD)
Every single time you listen to Channel ORANGE something new presents itself. It has to be, hands down, my favourite album of 2012 and I regret not finding it sooner. Frank Ocean is a powerful musician, with lyrics heightening your emotions. All in all, fantastic album.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's really good but it's in danger of being over-hyped., 18 July 2012
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Simply put the album is as good as you can get from an RnB work of art. Stand out tracks include the soulfull feelgood vibe of "Thinking Bout You", the head-bopping funk of "Super Rich Kids" the epic journey of "Pyramids" and then "Bad Religion and Pink Matter.
The rest of it, while not as good, or at least slow growers, aren't merely just fillers. They all contribute to the album.
It's not the kind of thing I would like normally but like NERD'Fly or Die, I've found myself strangely addicted to it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Black Bowie, 23 Mar 2013
This review is from: Channel Orange (Audio CD)
Fantastic new music, fresh sounding, full of pathos..Almost a concept album when Cleopatra kicks in..Ive listened to a lot of fabulous music over the years but Ive never heard anything like this track and Pink Matter..Like every great artist he takes elements from all styles of music genres and has created something new..I predict this guy could be of huge relevance in the future...I find the music hard to define, but give it a listen you might just love it...I cant stop playing it...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Album, 15 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Channel Orange (Audio CD)
One of the greatest albums I have heard in a longtime. This album contains many classic songs like:

Thinking About You
Sweet Life
Pyramids
Lost
Forrest Gump
Bad Religion

Check out these songs on youtube or spotify, then purchase the album to support Frank Ocean.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Best R&B album I have heard for a long time, 20 Jan 2013
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I discovered this artist via a very positive review on the Guardian and I have not been disappointed. It is by far the best record of the genre I have heard for years. Franck Ocean has managed to deliver an album that hits the delicate balance between strong lyrics and suave instrumentals. I am particularly fond of the tracks Crack Rock, Pyramids and Lost. For once I can say the hype was justified.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy it, 9 Dec 2012
Best album I have ever bought. Frank Ocean brought music back to what it should be. Its brilliant throughout and never gets old no matter how many times you listen to it - (which for me is a lot)
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Channel Orange
Channel Orange by Frank Ocean (Audio CD - 2012)
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