It’s been a minute since we heard from 11:11, but he is making his reappearance in a big way with a nice homage to Mint Condition that still shows off some of what he is about.
Rob Holladay, Yonatan Watts, and Jupyter do a good job re-purposing the Pretty Brown Eyes sample to something that is more than just a nostalgia bomb for more knowing listeners. They manage to keep the R&B roots intact while adding just enough of the modern trap undertones to bring in newer listeners who have never heard the original before. The other thing they did was make the production a better fit for 11:11’s voice who doesn’t quite have the soulfulness of Stokley but whose mellow tone is a better match for more enthusiastic backing rhythms.
And 11:11 does sound good here. There is a lot of texture in this song for him as he comes roaring into the track with a lot of power only to dial it back for the verses and come with a sensuality and gentleness. That switch helps him own this track in a way that some other singers might have problems doing.
The lyrics are the element that needs the most work in this. While the track makes sense and you easily get what is being said, there really isn’t anything new to it and a lot of it falls into cliche. There isn’t enough concrete imagery or a good standout line to make the words stick and makes what could have been a signature track less memorable in the long run.
We are curious if this means that a new project is on the way from the singer. It’s been a year and some change since his last release and he’s about due to drop something for us.