Greetings! It’s been awhile since we’ve done this feature and per AJ’s suggestion, it’s time to bring it back. In case you don’t remember, The Listening Club is a roundtable review of music you may not be hip to yet. We give a quick blurb, list our favorite tracks and give it a score. This week, we’re reviewing an album by R&B singer Arin Ray.
First, we’ll start with Ebony.
I’m trying to actually listen to music that people recommend to me instead of just lying about it and saying that I will, so AJ’s recommendation (actually shameless plug cause this his cousin) gave me a chance to put that into action. I was surprised to see this unheard of artist (to me) with some fairly big level features like YG, DRAM, and YG to name a few, but this album didn’t disappoint. However, since we being honest, I would skip the first 3 songs and start with “Take” and listen from there. It’s a pretty chill album that you can listen to at work without headphones as well at home.
Favorite Tracks: We Aint Homies, F**k Ya’ll, Skeemin
Least Favorite Tracks: Tracks 1-3
So, as Eb mentioned, Arin is actually my cousin (3rd cousin I think) it’s not like we are close, but since he is family, I decided to give this album a spin when it dropped and was pleasantly surprised. Unlike Eb, I actually like the first 2 songs, overall, this is a solid album and outside of “F**K Ya’ll” with SiR, I wasn’t a fan of the features. Honestly, Arin holds his own pretty well. Not surprising given that Terrace Martin and Ali were involved in the production of this album.
Favorite Tracks: F**K Ya’ll, HMU, Old School, Skeemin, Sometime Ass Nigga
Least Favorite Tracks: Who Came Up Missin
Since I don’t watch X-Factor, I never heard of this guy. Had no clue what to expect when I pressed play. Although this album started off rough, it does have some redeemable moments. Given his impressive, growing list of writing credits for other artists, it’s apparent he’s talented with the pen. Still, after listening to this album, I’m still not quite sure what artist he wants to be. There will be one really good song and it’s instantly followed by a song that sounds like a 2-minute demo. The highs of this album are high and the lows are really low. Although the album is lacking focus, I still think it’s a decent first outing. It actually sounds like a pretty refreshing take to revive the early 2000s R&B, which I’m perfectly fine with.
Favorite tracks: “Take”, “Communication”, “Old School”
Least Favorite Tracks: “Sometime Ass Nigga” and any track that’s two minutes long
Average Score: 3.6
You can check out previous reviews here.