Album Review: Taio Cruz – Rokstarr

Taio Cruz has been one of those brilliantly gifted music artists that at least in a time produce one or more outstanding tracks that should’ve been number one. Well, he missed that on his debut album, ‘Departure’. Fortunately, he was able to recompose again and find his perfect melodies. With his latest single, ‘Break Your Heart’ which incredulity debuted at #1 4 weeks ago in the UK Singles Chart, this Londoner seemed he finally got what he needed.

His new album, ‘Rokstarr’ which was supposedly titled ‘T.W.O: This Way Out’ is somehow his description of breaking out into the music industry as a genuine article. Although his debut ‘Departure’ suggested the same intention, ‘Rokstarr’ is truly his shining moment.

The album consisting of 12 tracks on the UK Standard Edition is filled with a concoction of different musical styles. From dance-floor anthems ‘Dirty Picture’ to the more syrupy tunes of ‘I’ll Never Love Again’. His efforts are clearly shown and it exemplifies the potential we all saw when he emerged unto the music limelight about 2 years ago.

‘Rokstarr’ got some familiar tracks we could pass on. The number one collaboration between Taio and Tinchy ‘Take Me Back’ gives in as an album filled and the song that was supposedly written for Girls Aloud member gone-solo slash X Factor judge, Cheryl Cole ‘Break Your Heart’ which we all knew had gone to be his most successful song to date.

On the positive note, ‘Dirty Picture’ is a club banger coming in with the help of US singer, Kesha which is somehow very suggestive in nature but absolutely astounding when it comes to its production. It’s somehow a remnant of a Benny Benassi style that just urges someone to get on his/her own feet to dance along. ‘No Other One’ sounded like ‘Break Your Heart’ number two which makes it a bit boring to be honest.

Taio presented the album in a not so obvious division. The first half- was induced with somehow upbeat tracks that showed his prowess as a music producer. On the other hand, Taio also decides to capture again his sense of sensitivity with his big-hearted ballads on the second half of the album. One thing that caught my attention is the Take That-ish styles of ‘Falling in Love’ and ‘Feel Again’ which can be similarly compared to the group’s last year hit ‘Greatest Day’.

Although the mixture of styles was impeccable, the concern is about the relation of the two. There couldn’t be any connection about the cohesion of both halves of the album. It’s like listening to a dance EP combined with a mellow, R&B EP. It was tad disappointing but still laudable in terms of its craftsmanship. Overall, it wasn’t that disappointing but let’s give the album a positive note. Taio’s talent evolved and improved with his second offering but yet he still has to push more because we all know his capability of doing more than he could actually do.

RATING: 8/10
RELEASED: October 12, 2009
LABEL: Island Records
DOWNLOAD THIS: ‘Dirty Picture’, ‘Feel Again’, ‘I’ll Never Love Again’


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