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Me. I Am Mariah...The Elusive Chanteuse - Quick Review and Favorite Tracks

Posted on the 13 June 2014 by Virginiamae @SugarRushedBlog
Me. I am Mariah...The Elusive Chanteuse - Quick review and favorite tracks
After listening to the new Mariah album a few times, I can now report on which tracks stand head and shoulders above the rest.  This is an important distinction because there are some (mostly adorable, poignant, dreamy, or otherwise acceptable) filler songs in the mix.  As the title indicates, this is the album Mariah wanted to make on her own terms (or that's how it really feels to me, at least) and she decided to include songs of various genres and themes so that instead of a coherent work such as Emancipation of Mimi, we have more of a patchwork, which is a choice that yields a unique and often compelling result.

The Best Tracks, in descending order:

1.  "Cry." - a stunning ballad with a soaring vocal and angst aplenty.  Like most of the songs on "Me. I am Mariah..." this feels quite vulnerable, honest, and confessional.

2.  "One More Try" - This completely magnificent George Michael cover joins the ranks of MC's covers of Journey's "Open Arms" and Phil Collins' "Against All Odds," all exceptional versions of classic power ballads.  I admire Mariah's open fangirling of this style of big 80's drama-pop.  Fantastic.

3.  "Faded" - I really like the subtle layers of this contemplative song.  It reminds me of a track that might have appeared on the Daydream album, which we all know can only be a very good thing.

4.  "The Art of Letting Go" - gets the lyrics award for wisdom (letting go ain't easy / it's just exceptionally hurtful") and humor ("go to Mimi on your contacts...press delete").

5.  "Thirsty" - a very nice thematic heir to "Obsession," and has that '90s sound to it that has fans excited that MC is embracing her more hiphop-oriented side again, previously seen  with the "Fantasy" remix, "Sweetheart," "Honey," "Heartbreaker," et al.  

6.  "You're Mine (Eternal)" - I struggle with feeling this sounds too much like "We Belong Together," but if you can put that aside, this is a truly lovely ballad in its own right.

7.  "It's a Wrap" ft Mary J. Blige - The first of two redone songs from her previous album Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel.  This was already a terrific break-up anthem, and the extra sass from MJB just enhances it - especially with regard to the conversational opening.

8.  "Betcha Gon' Know" ft. R. Kelly - Okay, R. Kelly's verse is flat-out hilarious and feels like another chapter in "Trapped in the Closet."  The original version of this song from Memoirs is better because it's a stripped down, slow-burning, bitter look at betrayal and vengeful emotions, but this is a fun twist on the track.

9.  "#Beautiful" ft. Miguel - a sweet, fun duet that captures the impetuous, infatuated feeling of an adventurous new love.

10.  "You Don't Know What to Do" ft. Wale - Disco inferno!  A sassy, confident kiss-off to a confused ex.

Best song not included on the album: "Triumphant."  I must point out that the Pulse remix of this track is one of my favorite Mariah songs, and would have made a fantastic addition to the album.

General note: Rappers are still rhyming Mariah's name with "on fire" and "higher."  This soothes me so much.

What do you think of MC's new album?  Share your favorite songs and critiques in the comments!

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