Rhye - BLOOD
Michael Milosh has gone through some changes since the debut album under the Rhye moniker came out in 2013. He got divorced, found someone new (She's the one on the cover of this record) and has finally returned with another soft rock offering for us. While life may be different his music is not, following almost the exact same patterns Woman did but instead of making Rhye just a studio affair He is making moves to make it more of a real band. The sensuality is there, the deep longing is there but from the outset the album is drag city. The last record felt new and inspired complete with features to make it really feel alive. Now however the music feels dated and stale, totally one note. Soft Rock can be beautiful, and this version of R&B made for getting down is nice but it lacks real emotional depth. Sade's songs, whom Rhye seems to "borrow" from A LOT on this record, always have this special inflection that make them incredible but, Rhye doesn't dive deep only scratching the surface of some baby making music. The run times of these tracks don't see long on the surface but they say so little during that it just sounds like the same phrases being repeated over and over. It feels entirely safe devoid of any real sexiness, just some forced idea of what is sensual including the hihgly sexualized album cover. I'm all for songs about sex, as most songs are, but when it's this on the nose it feels more than a bit silly.
On "Phoenix" they sing "Love me till I'm raw" which has this sort of dark sentiment to it, the idea of aggressive sex, but it doesn't feel sexy which makes it totally not work. Nothing feels worse than someone trying way to hard and it feels like Milosh is desperate to make another Woman, but maybe that wasn't an album that could be remade. Just as much as the songs themselves drag, the album feels like it just flies by not really able to get a hold of anything before it's totally gone. This entire record sounds like an album you put on when you are trying to get laid and instead only feels a bit cringy. The second to last track "Softly" at least has a semblance of a beat grounding it and giving it some weight, but almost every other track feels airy and flippant. When these absolutely stupid spacey electronics come in on the final track "Sinful" this record's fate is completely sealed. There was ton of hype surrounding this record so I expected something fantastic, my expectations were way to high. Putting a nude gal in an artsy pose on your cover does not a good album make.
4.9 out of 10