Teyana Taylor hasn’t released a multi-track project since 2015 (2014 if you don’t want to count her freelease), so when Kanye West announced the that her new album would be the last of string of projects that he produced for meant to be released in June, people were excited. The first lady of G.O.O.D Music has always felt like she was languishing on the vine and it was good to know she was coming back. And, after a release day hiccup, she dropped something good.
The album itself isn’t bad; there is maturity in the content and production that gives Taylor a lift in terms of overall listenability without making her sound dated or alienating her original fanbase. The production for the project is a little hit or miss, with some of the overlapping effects being too much and overwhelming the songs. If you are a fun of the current era of Kanye West production but want something more soulful, this is for you and you’ll find something to like.
The song that stood out the most to us was Rose In Harlem, a track that somewhat chronicles how Taylor maneuvers through life, trying to keep herself grounded while not shutting herself off too much. A lot of the song has to do with all the fake concern and fake friends that keep reaching for her and her stating that she is capable of avoiding the traps because she has learned through trial and come out the other side. But there are also elements of her stating that she will prove herself even if its not in the way that people expect, making her moves in the way that best suits her. It’s an interesting take on age-old theme and she handles it well.
Her vocals are the seller for this track. As much as the production is good, it does not compare to the sound of Taylor’s voice. As much as we loved her tone on the majority of her first album, you can hear the growth in her sound. She has a slight growl at times, but she always comes off butter smooth–even when she’s laying into people with a little sass. Her annunciation is clearer and she really delivers well without sounding repetitive (even when the lyrics repeat) or sleepy against a somewhat monotone psuedo-trap beat.
If you like this song, we suggest you check out the rest of the album; the other song are in a similar vein in terms of sound and Taylor manages to keep things varied. At the very least she gave us one song to remember.
K.T.S.E is available through all digital outlets.