PARTYNEXTDOOR, ‘PARTYNEXTDOOR TWO’ [ALBUM REVIEW]
As a wave of new R&B stars emerges on the music scene, PARTYNEXTDOOR has managed to establish himself as an artist to watch in his own right. With the Weeknd’s unceremonious departure from Drake’s OVO camp, the singer and producer has filled in the vacant slot as the flagship crooner with ease.
Delivering standout appearances on the ‘Nothing Was the Same’ album and making noise with his Drizzy-assisted single, ‘Over Here,’ the Canadian upstart released his self-titled debut project in 2013. Now the 21-year-old artist returns with his second effort, ‘PARTYNEXTDOOR TWO.’
The album’s first selection, ‘East Liberty,’ kicks things off on a high note, instantly drawing you in with its pulsating beat and addictive hook. When he sings, “The summer’s over and we’re watching the sun finally set / Seems like it’s forever now, but forever’s here,” it makes you want to pick up your significant other and do 100 on the open highway without a care in the world. This track details Party’s world of late night excursions, setting the table for the rest of the album.
‘Sex On the Beach’ is an unabashed exhibitionist affair with Party crooning “Girl, you’re so sexy, everybody should see your body / Girl you’re so sexy, everyone should see you, everyone should see you in the open.” This is the perfect soundtrack for foreplay. ‘Her Way’ details an encounter with a lady killer in the club while ‘Belong to the City’ plays as a short, but enticing interlude in which he earnestly sings, “I’m from the city where you ain’t gotta love too long, where you ain’t gotta love too far” with an underlying longing for romance despite his lyrics of indifference.
The project’s buzz cut of a single ‘Recognize’ features OVO head honcho Drake and is everything fans of the two could’ve imagined and more. Party gets in his warbly rapping mode, with effective results, and the rapper delivers another potent verse to add to the pile of murderous 16’s he’s been dropping as of late.
The album’s first misstep comes courtesy of ‘Options,’ which isn’t particularly horrid, but fails to stand out in comparison to the other selections on the album. Party gets a little sensuous on the project’s closer, ‘Muse’ with lyrics like “Girl, I can see your stress / Come rely on me for sex / Keep your thighs in line, girl, hold on / Get it right and turn me on.” He paints a vivid of picture of lust amid urges to “don’t hesitate” as he asks to “let him demonstrate,” ending the project on a steamy note.
‘TWO’ is a showcase of PND’s futuristic soundbeds and knack for unfiltered musings. If you’re more attuned to contemporary R&B than the new, infused version that’s been all the rage as of late, PND may not be your cup of tea. The closest Party comes to offering a ballad on this outing is the red light special of a track ‘Thirsty,’ but infectious melodies, such as those featured on cuts like the superb ‘Bout It, will draw in most listeners with an open ear.
PARTYNEXTDOOR’s debut album may have put him on the radar, but ‘TWO’ serves as the singer’s own version of ‘So Far Gone,’ a true coming out party for an artist we may be hearing about for a while. And we’ll throw a party to that for sure.