Pharrell Williams – Girl Album Review

Into an increasingly production oriented musical environment comes the latest solo effort by N.E.R.D. alumni Pharrell Williams. Works like this go down amazingly smooth upon first listen with a sound that bristles with modern technology. However it’s the repeat listens that really define the work.

Williams is an incredibly busy individual and with all his forays into both music production and fashion, it has taken him over seven years to release solo album number two, Girl. All his recognizable flourishes are intact and there are hooks everywhere (of both music composition and sound effects nature). The most obvious starting point is the Oscar nominated song Happy.

Happy pulls out all the stops with a great handclap hook and background harmonies that help the song float right out of your speakers. Speakers that are now turned up so loud everyone into the neighbourhood gets a taste, wanted or not. The production on this song as well as the remaining nine songs is so sonically well placed, you can literally not find a point where it sounds too loud. Trust me I tried.

Longevity for music like this comes from not just a sonic sheen but also from a lyrical depth and for a man so surrounded by members of the female persuasion, he remains both interested in and respectful of the fairer sex. He name checks some great women in history and never lets his libido descend in cliché rap histrionics. It’s a strong work from a real talent and funky to boot.

Rob Hudson