Libra

Studio Album by released in 2005
Libra's tracklist:
Please
Trippin' (That's the Way Love Works)
What's Good
Take This Ring
Midnite
I Wanna Be (Your Baby)
Sposed to Be
Stupid
Finally
Shadowless

Libra review

Long before the likes of J-Lo and Britney Spears hypnotized the world with their frequently photographed rumps and midriffs, Toni Braxton spearheaded the cluster of desirable females with a knockout combination of seductive looks, silky vocal tones and an inclination towards dresses which seemed to be produced during a cloth shortage. But image aside, Braxton's career CV can't be laughed at. She had six Grammys, seven American Music Awards and a total of 25 million worldwide album sales. Toni Braxton just might be one of the best, most distinctive voices to have come out of the nineties. Taking the deep, lush tones and timbres of Anita Baker and adding a sizzling sensuality she created her own sound. Recently Braxton tried packaging herself to a younger audience and it just didn’t work. Although she had more talent in her manicured left pinky than a good portion of the competition her urban sound didn’t impress the young potential fans and confused her established fanbase. After several different greatest hits and a remix album many people were wondering when they’d hear from Toni again. Then the single Please came out and eventually it became clear there would be an album. Libra marks Toni Braxton's departure from Arista, her longtime label. And according to the cover of her fifth studio album, she is just Toni now, not Toni Braxton.

Thankfully, this album is a return to form with a smooth and consistent R&B offering. Although it’s not in the same league as Mariah's comeback earlier this year it’s still a welcomed return for this diva. Please, the first single from Libra, is classic Toni with its sparse but absolutely irresistible R&B production. Trippin (That’s The Way Love Works) features police sirens, a melancholy piano riff and some interesting lyrics about the love/hate relationship that being in a romance can have. What’s Good is more typical Toni fare, which would have fit in nicely on the Secrets album with it’s subtle nods to jazz and R&B. Midnight is another nod to Toni's beginnings over a more modern hip-hop beat. Take This Ring is almost a complete pilfering of Amerie’s go-go flavored delight 1 Thing. Toni does her own thing with her low, sultry vocals over the top and that part is very nice. Shadowless ends the album with one of her best ballads since Unbreak My Heart. Toni communicates the same isolated feeling she has before but the production is so vulnerable and her voice communicates such a bruising loss. The acoustic guitar is her only companion and you can hear the squeaks of fingers sliding across the string, the thud as the guitar player smacks the guitar for emphasis. The fact that Nuno Bettencourt is playing gives it that same aching feeling you got from Extreme’s More Than Words so many years ago.

Overall, Libra is a good and enjoyable album. While no Toni Braxton, it's definitely her answer to Secrets. If you're expecting over the top, bombastic vocals on Libra, then this album may not be the one for you. If you're expecting a barrage of uptempo dancables, then this album may not be the one for you. But if you're in for an easy listening ride through the thickets of passion, this album delivers. Although Libra is Toni's spottiest album to date, her fans shouldn't have any trouble appreciating it.

(12.10.2005)
Rate review3.66
Total votes - 137


Listen to MP3 Music in the app because you deserve the best
Continue
or go to the mobile site