So while the world complains to their search bars about why the next Frank Ocean album isn’t out, I thought I’d take a time out away from the amazing work Franks PR team are doing and take a listen back to ‘channel ORANGE’.
I’m not that savvy with Frank Ocean. I know a little about him opening up about his sexuality, impressive in the 2012 worlds of rap and R&B which he frequents are not known for their tolerance of homosexuality.
However, away from this story, all I knew were a select few tunes. I was given on a mixtape by my girlfriend at the time (I know, who still makes these). One song resonated with me and that was “Thinkin’ Bout You” which I first heard as a Ryan Hemsworth Bootleg (tricky to find).
Absolutely blown away by the high notes that Frank hits to perfection on the breakdown, shivers still rolling down my back.
A Mr Ocean kills it with one of the greatest artists of my generation IMO, “Pink Matter” (feat. André 3000). Andre adds his typically cool Atlanta flow. Andre doesn’t necessarily work within Ocean’s thematic confines, but his flow bumps against the elastic beat.
Of course, centrepiece “Pyramids” can’t go without being mentioned, but I rarely am drawn to songs which are incessantly played on commercial media. It’s a fantastic song, but I am only now enjoying it now it’s not being rammed down my neck.
Nearing the end of the album is “Forest Gump”. A playful homage to the very much loved hero, much like Drake’s “Practice”, with a distinctly playful concept. A very accessible lighthearted song with catchy melody is very dissimilar to what came before it.
This brilliant album ends with “End”, God knows how he came up with that one. The Latin jazz feel of the track brings about a smooth conclusion with the help of a female voice whispering “You’re special… I wish you could see what I see”.
p.s. Def Jam has done Prince level censorship on ‘Channel Orange’ so couldn’t post videos