In 2011, up-and-coming pop star Kathleen Brien, better known as Katy B, released her debut album. Now, Katy B has released her second full album, “Little Red.”
Unlike her previous album, “On A Mission,” “Little Red,” floats through one ear and out the other. With few memorable tracks, there is little to want on a full album scale. While some tracks are adequate, there is nothing alarmingly special off of “Little Red.” With every song, the listener is left feeling like something larger and more spectacular is coming, but, like a staircase with no end, the build-up never reaches its full potential.
The lead single on “Little Red,” “Next Thing,” is shallow and repetitive. With little to no meaning, “Next Thing” relies solely on the repetition of lyrics to try and build itself up to something worth listening to. What results is an annoying song that tries to emulate some of Rihanna’s earliest tracks, but without the same catchiness.
“I Like You” is yet another track that seems to rely solely on the repetition of lyrics in attempt to get listeners with a catchy tune. Unfortunately in this track, the instrumentals and strumming of the synthesizer fail to complement the lyrics.
“Sapphire Blue” is a perfect example of the plateau the album hits. Doing nothing to push the album forward, this filler track falls completely flat. Fast-paced, yet somehow slow moving, this quiet song does little to help the heart of “Little Red” beat.
Perhaps the saddest part about “Little Red” is that tracks like “Sapphire Blue” are not infrequent. In fact, quite a few songs on the record seem to be fillers. Tracks like “Still,” “Tumblin’ Down” and “Everytime” do not push to make a strong case for Katy B’s “Little Red.” Many tracks come across as uninspired and weak.
“Little Red,” does have some perfectly fine tracks, however the lead single off the album, titled “5 AM,” is perhaps the songs most upbeat track. Unlike the tiresome hour that the song sings of, “5 AM” has a lot going for it. “5 AM” is a fast-paced, dub-step inspired track with all of Katy B’s energy being released through it. On an otherwise slow, sub-par album, it is terrific to see a track that can help the record gain some momentum.
The album’s next best track, “Crying For No Reason,” is a power ballad unlike anything else on “Little Red.” “Crying For No Reason” is an emotionally driven piece with creative and tasteful lyrics. As the song builds, so does the affection listeners will feel. When the song finishes, listeners will instantly wish for its return.
Then there is “All My Lovin’.” While not particularly original, this track stands on its own as one of Katy B’s best work. “All My Lovin’” seems to be made for remixing and on its own, the song is still vigorous and entertaining. In this case, Katy B’s repetition of lyrics somehow works into a much more appealing song as compared to some of the other tracks using similar strategies.
Labeled a dance album, Katy B’s newest tracks are filled with synthetic beats and intertwining vocals. Unlike her previous album, “Little Red” may not leave much of an imprint in music. Almost every track is surprisingly lukewarm. With only a few saving graces, Katy B’s album falls short of having the ability to jumpstart any type of dance party.