Miley Cyrus called her new album Bangerz because, as she explained, it contains nothing but — and indeed, now that the album sampler has been unveiled, it does sound like the songs on this LP go bang. Thirty second snippets from each track have been posted, which reveal the overall sound of the LP — executive produced by Mike WiLL Made It — which leans heavy on hip-hop collabs and squelchy, urban production from Mike, Pharrell and Will.i.am.
Based on these teasers, it’s a mixed bag: Some of Bangerz sounds really good, and some of it abysmally misses the mark. All in all, though, a solid effort from Mileybird. Let’s review.
Album opener “Adore You” is dreamy and refreshingly melodic, while the already-previewed Britney Spears-assisted “SMS (Bangerz)” sounds annoying, frankly (which is a bummer). The Pharrell-produced “4×4,” with Nelly, features two cringe-inducing lyrics in only 30 seconds — “I’m a female rebel, can’t you tell?” and “Drivin’ so fast, bout to piss on myself” — which is just ugh, but there’s redemption right around the corner in the Future team-up “My Darlin’” which sounds dreamy and haunting, like Ciara‘s “Where You Go.”
“Live Money Party” also grates, but “Get It Right” is sunny and funky like old-school Pharrell. “Drive” still sounds like the best song on the album, hands-down. “FU,” with French Montana, also leaves something to be desired, but surprisingly, the Will.i.am-produced “Do My Thang” sounds great — like Cyrus’ take on Rihanna‘s “Where Have You Been.” There’s a classic pop chorus on “Maybe You’re Right,” which reunites Cyrus with longtime producer John Shanks, and “Someone Else” is also appealingly throbbing.
From the deluxe edition tracks, “Rooting For My Baby” sounds like something from Justin Timberlake‘s Justified (meaning it sounds great), while “On My Own” is more classic Pharrell, and the Ludacris-guested “Hands In The Air” is more promising than that by-the-numbers title suggests.
It’s lively and packed with personality, even when it’s imperfect. Preview Bangerz below.