Now Playing: Album Review – The Dream, Love vs. Money

feb17_thedream

 I finally copped this CD today after snoopin around for it in Sunrise Records, after the HMV associate told me with a confused facial expression, “I guess we sold out of all our copies” To be honest, I was about to call it a day after that, but I hope knew my Readers are waiting on this one! Since then, I’ve had the CD on repeat as it copied itself into the iPod and the Nokia. Thoughts so far? I’m down.

Love vs. Money avoids the dreaded sophomore slump  simply because it starts off again where Love/Hate left off. Same producers, but same innovative beats; similar lyrics, but different issues; same monotone voice, but yet, more depth. So the good news is, Terrius “TheDream” Nash is evolving, but not enough to isolate his audience (*cough* Kanye *cough*) or to establish his music as groundbreaking. If you enjoyed his debut album, you will enjoy this one. You may even respect TheDream more, because you realize he is not a fluke, one-hit wonder-artist.

Surprisingly enough, I first heard about TheDream about 6 years ago when I listened to Nivea’s most recent album, Complicated. I caught his name in the production credits and also caught him rapping on a couple of her songs. His swag wasn’t exactly developed just yet, but you could tell he had talent. Even with his solid work at best on Complicated, I knew TheDream was unique. I later became a fan, like most people after hearing Shawty is the Shit, then copping his first CD and playing the HAIL out of it, along with most of my family. He was like a breath of fresh air in the music that was out at the time. Possibly TheDream’s greatest advantage over these other R&B cats is the creative control he has on his projects. A true artist.

Ok, let’s talk about the music. The album starts off with Dream’s lead single, Rockin that Shit, a radio-friendly song in the same vein as Shawty is the Shit. This theme carries on into the tracks like My Love feat. Mariah Carey and Put it Down, that reminds me of Playin in her Hair. Dream effortlessly mixes futuristic beats with Prince-like vocals, Hip-Hop influenced braggadocio and overtly sexual references. On the aforementioned, Put It Down, Dream lets it be known:

 “Have you every had somebody do it to you/ While they was playin in your hair…Do you want it from the front or the back or on your side/Just relax and let me lay between your legs”

His second single, My Love is a favourite of mine. Pairing him with Mariah make for a cute pair and Mariah handles the choppy-style singing the lyrics call for, well:

“Got everybody way up in our business/ Us leaving each other stay on their wish list/ I see them reachin everytime you call me, baby/They on my back like a shirt/ Get off me, baby!” Cute.

dreamcd

Halfway through the album, the music stops being cute. The production becomes more brooding and Dream’s lyrics begin to tell more of a story. Much like Usher channeled his real life relationship into Confessions, Dream addresses his divorce to his ex-wife and mother of his children into this album. He is unapologetic about it as well. On the title tracks, Love vs. Money part I and II, he breaks it down for us:

 “Cause when love is your problem/ Nothing can solve it/ When love is your problem/ Leave/ No man can solve it.” Preach.

He doesn’t finish it there. Fancy is about six and a half minutes long of Dream singing about the Love of Money and the finer things. It is a reflective song that find Tricky Stewart & Dream utilizing the music to enhance its lyrics. Right Side of My Brain is another gem that tells how Love can be blinding at times. The album finishes off with Kelly’s 12 play, where Dream plays homage to the Originator of the catchy love track, hoping out loud that it is time to pass the torch. If Mr. Nash continues to make music like this, the torch may be arriving sooner that he thinks.

ChokLit’s Standout tracks:

3 – Walking on the Moon
4 – My Love
5 – Put It Down
12 – Mr. Yeah
9 – Love vs. Money: Part 2

Oh hell, I’m feelin the whole album! Go cop that ish!

Lola B

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Great review…thanks!

  2. […] number one spot two weeks ago for his second album Love vs. Money (if you missed it, read my reivew here) debuted. Dream debuted at #2 but slipped in his second week to #4 with 56,000 albums […]


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