Murals only ever vaguely resemble the subject, so why should Mr. Christopher Brown’s album art be any different? Seriously though, the gum chewing R&B sensation, turned post-wifey-beating, tattooed pseudo thug looks like he went on a Big Mac binge on the cover of his latest album, F.A.M.E, which stands for “Fans Are My Everything” (good one, dog).

But let’s not talk about the album art, or Christopher’s hypothetical eating habits, or his past exploits, or even his recent exploits. (It’s 2011, who hasn’t exploded on a morning talk show?) Let’s just talk about the straight beast mode, pimpquest tracks that I may or may have not listened to yet.

Okay, since that last paragraph I’ve listened to the album a bunch of times. I assure you. And despite Brown’s dulcet tones, F.A.M.E lacks any real creative edge. It’ll most likely serve up two or three largely forgettable tracks that will surface on the radio for a bit and fizzle out.

From the top down, the opener “Deuces” (featuring Tyga and Kevin MC) is a pretty okay song. Mr. Christopher Brown croons about leaving a girl who has been “nothing but a vulture” and “chuckin’ up them deuces” on the way out. I’m glad that Mr. Brown is trying to make the deuces popular again. I’ve always fancied throwing deuces upon retiring from gatherings and the like, but ever since 2005 I’ve just looked so lame doing it. Clearly, this hot track will make it acceptable once again. I’m so ready to President Nixon my way out of a party to this jam.

Hitting skip a couple of times, I got to “Look at Me Now” (featuring Lil Wayne and Busta Rhymes), which the neat-as-hell Diplo produced. Brown dabbled in rapping for this song, and, while he probably should never try that again, Diplo’s hands in the beat and the superb verses from Wayne and Busta makes “Look at Me Now” the highlight track of the album.

The seventh track, “Yeah 3x” is the typical, cookie-cutter club song. There’s the pulsing bass, the pre-chorus buildup, the gang vocals and, of course, how could we forget, that obligatory Ke$ha synth. You can’t get white boy wasted and “hit da flo” without a synth blasting. I imagine that so many under-aged girls are working it to this at that club on 25A right next to the Meat Farms. Good times.

I guess you could measure the success of this song by how many drunk floozies and desperate rugby players are grinding to it, but still, there is not an ounce of creativity in it. You could tell my boy Mr. Christopher just mailed it in. You’re better than that, dog. You’re better than that.

“Beautiful People,” the thirteenth song, is another premiere number, or at least one of the more bearable ones. It’s kind of ambient, with a soft piano synth and Benassi vocals put through an echo. Nothing much more to say about that.

I’ll give a ho-hum pass to the fourteenth song, “Bomb,” just because my boy Wiz Khalifa makes an appearance. But, overall, F.A.M.E is completely unremarkable.  “Up 2 You” sounds like it would be the song that Cuba Gooding Jr. would bump while he finally gets with Nia Long in Boyz n the Hood…in the worst way possible. (I was pulling for you, Cuba. What a touching scene.) It’s just one of those cheesy, 90’s sounding R&B slow jams.

“Wet the Bed” (featuring Ludacris) is unlistenable. Luda, the king of horribly raunchy rhymes, just needs to stop. It’s not 1999, man. That stuff doesn’t fly anymore. I don’t even see the Justin Bieber song “Next 2 You” getting on the radio. And that’s saying something.

Really though, this album could have come out in 2003, judging by the styling. There is nothing new here and nothing of merit, besides “Look at Me Now.” Just do what most Chris Brown fans do and download the three singles on iTunes or find them on Napster or whatever they do.


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