R&B/Soul singer-songwriter Syleena Johnson released her fifth studio album, “Chapter 5: Underrated,” on September 27, 2011. The title of the album speaks for itself. Although Syleena Johnson has the qualities of a great R&B singer, she is definitely overlooked in the music industry.
The album begins with a bold track called “Underrated.” Syleena lets everyone know that she may be underrated, but that won’t stop her from putting out quality music. “Some say she’s outdated but they just want to hate her. They know she’s underrated.”
The songbird follows up with her lead single off the album, “A Boss.“Syleena is looking for a boss just like her: “He can get it, he can get it, if he’s a boss just like me.” Syleena states that it’s not easy to win her heart, and she’s not looking for anyone to pay her bills. All she wants is someone who knows how to love.[audio:http://cdn.ratedrnb.com//2011/09/02-syleena_johnson-a_boss.mp3]
In “Fade Away”, a percussion-driven track, Syleena vows that she knows how to love and her love will never fade away. Syleena experiments with her vocal range on the chorus.
Syleena Johnson is joined by R&B songbird Tweet on “Angry Girl.” This acoustic-driven song is for the women show animosity towards men, leading to their trust issues with other women, which leaves little room for women who are looking for love. [audio:http://cdn.ratedrnb.com//2011/09/04-syleena_johnson-angry_girl_feat._tweet.mp3]
In “Like Thorns,“ a piano-driven balled, Syleena sings about growing tired of being in a relationship with a dude who is insecure, doing things like searching through her. Syleena becomes fed up with his immature antics and showed him to the door.[audio:http://cdn.ratedrnb.com//2011/09/Syleena-Johnson-Like-Thorns.mp3]
On a lighter note, singer Malone joins Syleena Johnson for a duet on “Little Things.” This heartfelt song paints the picture of real love. “Baby it’s the little things you do that satisfies me.” Sometimes it’s the little things that people do that make others fall in love with them. The live instrumental really adds to the song.
Good things don’t last forever. In “My Shoes,” Syleena expresses her unhappiness with a guy. She asks him to put his foot in her shoes. “What would you do if the shoe was on the other foot, babe? / What if it’s me that walks all over you?” This song is definitely an anthem for the ladies.
Syleena calls out her critics on “Label Me.” The seasoned vocalist demands respect from those who like to mislabel. “If you’re gonna keep calling me out of my name, then you better come correct with how you labeling me.”
Syleena gets very bold on “Go Head” which features female rapper Na’Tee. She calls out a man who thinks he’s player and lets him know that he’s not going to play her. “You get the picture, I’m the prize, so you better recognize. If you not man enough to handle, then I suggest that you should go head, go head.”
Following the sassy track is “Bad Person.” In this song, Syleena slows down the tempo and focuses strictly on her amazing vocals. The vocal arrangement on this song is simply amazing.
The songstress heats things up in her sensual song, “The Champ.” “Mesmorized by my technique, I make him say ‘damn you the champ baby.’ / My stroke is like a T.K.O. / Three-minute round, you come so slow. Hit him with the combo 1, 2, 3…” You could definitely make some babies to this song!
Syleena ends the album with an uplifting, “Stone Wall.” She sings about her trials and tribulations that she’s faced in life. With faith as her weapon, she’s “standing like a stone wall.” The message behind this song is beautiful. It’s one of those songs that anyone can relate to.
Overall, “Chapter 5: Underrated” is a solid R&B/Neo-Soul album with powerful vocals and exceptional production. I highly recommend that you buy this album!
Reviewed by K.DeShawn