Nowadays I think it's quite rare to have such a huge pop star how can actually play instruments and produce his own music. Pharrell played every instrument and was executive producer for his second solo studio album, and as always he delivers his brilliant brand of sophisticated and different pop. Though a lot of people would buy this album for the two massive singles 'Marilyn Monroe' and 'Happy' it is riddled with juicy pop tunes with an edge that reminds me of the N*E*R*D days. 'Marilyn Monroe' is one of the fav's on this album and it works brilliantly as the opener, combining sweet strings with a heavy and funky drum and bass back up. Then before 'Happy' kicks in on the fifth track there is 'The Hunter' the most N*E*R*D song on the album dripping with sexuality and achingly slow paced to enhance the seductive vocals. As the album progresses the production varies even more with songs like 'Lost Queen' with it's African tribal beats and a classically arranged R&B ballad 'Know Who You Are' featuring Alicia Keys. But the song that I feel is the most impressive, alongside 'Marilyn Monroe' is 'Gust Of Wind. It's trippy chorus ripe with auto-tune gives the atmosphere that the song needs and like 'Marilyn Monroe' it is laced with lovely strings. Yes it is pop, yes it is the album with the most over played song on the radio but it is also Pharrell, one of the most inventive pop stars of the past 5 years. The pop music community always needs someone like this.
Essential Tracks: Marilyn Monroe Brand New The Hunter Happy Gust Of Wing