5 Underrated R&B Albums
- Jazmine Sullivan — Reality Show
After a five-year hiatus, Sullivan returned to the music scene in 2015 with an album which showcased her talents and depth as a songwriter and as anticipated her soulful vocals. The album touched on a range of topics from self-acceptance to Instagram models. The album received a Grammy nomination for Best R&B album but ended up losing to Black Messiah by D’Angelo. Favourite tracks: Brand New, Silver Lining, Let it Burn and Forever Don’t Last. I warn you now, Forever Don’t Last will make you believe you have just ended a 10-year relationship with your partner that you never had!
2. Teedra Moses — Cognac and Conversations
Cognac and Conversations was released in 2015, with this being Moses’ first album in 11 years. We can always count on Moses to deliver honest and raw lyrics sung with her sweet and sensual vocals. The good, bad and ugly sides of love are ever-present on this album. The soul and jazz-infused production served as a great foundation for a solid body of work. Both tracks with Rick Ross, All I Ever Wanted and Cognac and Conversations are stand out tracks. I also love Only U and The One feat. Anthony Hamilton.
3. Kelly Rowland — Talk a Good Game
The lead single, “Kisses Down Low” despite being a hit, didn’t truly reflect the sound of the album. This album truly signalled a return to Rowland’s R&B roots. Her tone and vocal range were proven and her willingness to touch on personal struggles were a mark of progress compared to her earlier albums. Favourite tracks: Down on Love, #1 and Talk a Good Game.
4. Amerie — In Love & War
This album was let down by poor promotion and a constantly changing release date. This album was perfect synergy of pop, soul and rock. Despite being more well-known for uptempo numbers e.g. 1 Thing, Amerie was able to hold her own on both the uptempo songs and ballads on this album. Favourite tracks: More than Love, Swag Back and Different People.
5. Melanie Fiona — The MF Life
The MF Life had some big featuring artists including J Cole, John Legend and Nas, but Melanie Fiona was still able to effortlessly dominate throughout the album. With production from Rico Love and Salaam Remi which meshed effortlessly with Fiona’s powerful and soulful vocals. Favourite tracks: 4AM, Change the Record and Running.
What R&B albums do you think are underrated?