REVIEW + GUEST BLOGGER:: A Review of Deitrick Haddon’s New Album, R.E.D. (Restoring Everything Damaged)’

dhaddy-RED
Okay! Deitrick Haddon has got a brand new album and yes, its title is quite catchy.
Take a good look at the album art and you sure will agree with us that it is a superb effort.
We really do commend Deitrick for the impressive art. However, we’ve got a review on the main work right here for you.

It was done by a blogger called Ayo and gotten from the platform of Gospel Guru.
Indeed, the era of mediocre gospel album covers is phasing out and we do welcome artistic and mind-blowing arts with open arms.

Artist: Deitrick Haddon
Album: R.E.D. (Restoring Everything Damaged)
Label: RCA Inspiration
Street Date: 9/3/13
Genre: Urban/R&B
iPod Pick: Strong

Honestly first I must say, I have waited and been totally expectant of this record. Once I heard D. Haddy was working on new material after the phenomenal and gone viral ‘Church on The Moon’ I couldn’t wait to listen.

Paint it Red left me hanging in musically and lyrically. At first listen I struggled to put meaning and a sense of connectedness to the lyrics and also why such an ‘ambient’ tune would be used at the beginning of an album that already had an intro. At some point the voices use to create ambience on the track came across more as annoying and not soothing. Feel a Breakthrough starts smooth with a sure ‘feel good’ tune, but it’s not really something we haven’t heard on gospel radio, very reminiscent of the early tunes of Kierra Kiki Sheard and say Tonex. The start of Victory is so intriguing that a smile is sure to pop up on your voice. However a hologram of Michael Jackson that would definitely pop up before you raise your hands to dance.

God @ Work feat. Destin Monet Haddon is pure sunshine right from the beginning. It’s that summer tune you want to drive to with your windows down. And you gotta love the reggae-esqued ad-libs Deitrick gives off on this one. And someone please tell me who is Destin Monet Haddon on this song? I was waiting to hear the voice. And don’t tell me it’s the baby that babbled at the beginning.

If it is, now that’s totally not fair.
A little Prayer, You’re With Me, and Handle This offer nothing much to write about musically. Gotta love the groovy old school clap tune on Waiting (All Night) and somehow D Haddy’s voice shines on this one. Have Your Way is vintage D. Haddy on this album, and I love it. Sweet Jesus funnily takes on the popular CCM style used by artist such as Chris Tomlin, David Crowder Band and upcoming bands such as Pocket Full of Rocks but has this annoying refrain. I have a feeling choir leaders would grab this one for their worship set list but I’m also trying to see how it would fit in terms of continuity.

The intro on Strong is dope! You just listen. In fact I think it’s the dopest song on the album. Yes I love it. This bouncy modern flair, rappers and hip hop artistes such as T.I, Chris Brown, Kid Cudi and our very own Chris Cobbins have experimented with plus everything we loved from Bob Marley all put together in one song. It’s fresh. On Just as I Am DeitrickHaddon opens up a vein and the tune that goes with the lyrical bleeding is perfect. The last five songs on the album got me thinking “why keep the best for the last”. They might just be worth the price of the album. In case you’ve been wondering Raining R.E.D is the anthemic tune on the album and it’s got a rock feel too. Church Rock is the party tune and Beyoncéwould be proud of this one and might learn a few tricks to re-record her ‘Love on Top’.

I think it takes some audacity to name an album a title that invokes a story concept in the minds of listeners. Artistes such as The Roots, Adele, Sufjan Stevens and Frank Oceanhave known to explore this so well. A story concept title is one that gets you thinking about a theme to a musical album, just like a movie or a book. Examples; For Adele’s 21 (which spawned Adele’s 21st year on earth) it was ‘young love, heartbreak and trying to start over again’. For Nichole Nordeman’s Brave, It was ‘Facing what was termed ‘fearful’ (in Nichole’s case a season of bringing her first son Charlie into the world) and waking up to the untapped strengths in the human soul). For Natalie Grant’s Awaken, It was shaking off the lethargy that is prone to cleave and waking up to a life of passion, hope and action. For Lecrae’s Gravity it was ‘standing upright in an upside down world’.

Story concept albums are tricky; with your title you already set an expectation for the audience. It’s better to use a more generic title than one that would not let you be taken serious as an “artist” in the nearest future. When I first heard R.E.D (Restoring Everything Damaged), a theme of recovery, journey and sour hope came to mind. Theme wise, Deitrick Haddon’s R.E.D fails to deliver a concrete one. It’s here and there with songs that might proclaim praise and confessions but tell no story stringed through. The theme R.E.D is hard to find on R.E.D.

Deitrick is one of the most gifted male artists I have come across (not just on gospel radio, even on mainstream) and R.E.D hasn’t changed that in any way but I think he needs to take some time and “smell the roses’ before his next release. The writing man, a little bit more of you in those lyrics. Even if it’s worshipful, we miss what we heard on your first couple of albums (Crossroads, Lost and Found. . .) but will we wait for what comes next from this powerhouse, let’s paint our stereos and iPods a little R.E.D. I think it’s gonna be worth it.

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