Brandy Reestablishes Her Place in R&B With “B7”
Brandy has officially made her comeback to R&B with the release of B7. The 15-track album offers a look into the journey of Brandy over the past few years and an up-close and personal view of how her artistry has transformed and grown.
“I believe that music heals. Music is the language that we all speak. It is what we all need, and I feel like we need it more now than we ever have. This is the year where we all need to feel like we have something to get us through. … I was a little hesitant with putting out music in this time because, of course, you want to speak to the times. And I’m thinking, “My music is not about exactly what’s going on right now.” But then I thought, “But this is the time where people need to feel like they have something to just escape and just help them heal.” … So that’s what made me feel better about releasing [the album]. And I think that we don’t want to feel alone. We need to feel community, we need to feel togetherness, we need to feel love right now. And I think music is the best way to feel that. It’s the shortcut to feeling that right away.”Brandy to Billboard about the hesitation to release “B7.”
The album opens up with “Save All My Love,” an open book to her views of self-worth, motherhood, and heartbreak. She closes with another “open book” type of song with “Bye BiPolar.” It is an equally explicit and stripped-down ballad about the depths of her heartbreak and how love can turn toxic and cold. Thankfully, at the end, she chooses to heal herself and let go.
The opening and closing songs set the audience up to a very open and honest Brandy.
The album only has three features. Brandy tends to keep collaborations to a minimum but each one seems to be intentional. One celebrates women and motherhood with “Baby Mama” featuring Chance the Rapper. “Baby Mama” tends to have a negative connotation but Brandy is reclaiming the word and turning it into a positive ode about womanhood. “Baby Mama” is infectiously catchy.
“Borderline” is extremely pleasing on the ear because of Brandy’s sultry voice. The lyrics tug at the heartstrings as Brandy reveals some of her insecurities within her relationships. “What would you do if you’re alone? // Would you think about me? // I know there’s something wrong with you on my mind all the time // It is what it is // Feel it crazy // Wanna be with me deep down, deep down // You can feel it you can’t help it baby // I’ll give you this heart of mine.” Brandy’s own flaws are on full display as she admits she can be very jealous with the lyrics, “I don’t want to be a schizo this time.”
The imagery of the video also addresses how love tends to make her feel crazy.
“Rather Be” is downright heavenly. Brandy’s voice glides effortlessly over the ethereal soundscapes. This song solidifies what people think when they think of Brandy. It is soulful, yet a step towards positive manifestation.
“Love Again” and “High Heels” were the better collaborations. “High Heels” is more fun, light anthem (sung with her daughter), while “Love Again” is a ballad about a troubled relationship working through their issues.
“B7‘ is an explicit and personal journey of heartbreak, self-worth, healing, and love.