href="http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1674711/rihanna-talk-that-talk-tracks.jhtml">Talk That Talk
href="http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1674711/rihanna-talk-that-talk-tracks.jhtml">Talk That Talkhit stores Monday on a wave of near-universal praise from critics. The album, which can already claim the #1 song in the country, "We Found Love" featuring Calvin Harris, is earning the Barbadian pop superstar the best reviews of her commercially massive career.
MTV News' James Montgomery already declared [article id="1674135"]Talk That Talk[/article] "not only the best effort of her career, but arguably the best pop album of 2011," an assessment echoed by the
target="_blank">New York Times
target="_blank">New York Times, People, Rolling Stone and SPIN.
"The [article id="1674711"]best songs[/article] on this lively and often great album sound synth-perfect for that time [the early 1990s]. 'We Found Love' almost criminally recalls the swinging Crystal Waters singles, with triumphant percussion somewhere between church and seventh-inning stretch," the Times writes. " 'Where Have You Been' is even better, with hard, chilly synths, snares from the poppier side of house music, and Rihanna moving in and out of a curled Siouxsie Sioux tone."
In a three-and-a-half -star review (out of four), People calls Talk That Talk "one of 2011's best pop-diva statements," while
target="_blank">Spinawards the set an 8 out of 10, complimenting the "occasionally perfect pop" songs on the record and noting the set is easily Rihanna's most cohesive to date.
target="_blank">Rolling Stonealso notes that Talk is far more than a collection of singles. "Rihanna's sixth album is her tightest, most assured yet — a relentlessly catchy and danceable pop album, with first-rate contributions from top songwriter-producers," the magazine writes.
Many critics also seem pleased that the pop star is moving away from the darker, brooding material that marked her last two records, Rated R and Loud. Those albums appeared to be heavily influenced by her troubled relationship with Chris Brown, and, as noted in
target="_blank">Entertainment Weekly's B-plus review, often "equated falling for someone with feeling tortured."
On Talk, RiRi instead approaches the topics of love and sex — the album's principal themes — with a less-heavy hand, even admitting on "Roc Me Out": "I'll let you in on a dirty secret/ I just want to be loved."
While the album is mostly earning raves, Pitchfork had a few complaints — mostly that the brief set (the 11-track album clocks in at a mere 38 minutes) never fully realizes its potential.
In its summation of the album,
href="http://www.billboard.com/news/rihanna-talk-that-talk-track-by-track-review-1005542002.story#/news/rihanna-talk-that-talk-track-by-track-review-1005542002.story" target="_blank">Billboardcalls Talk "a fleshed-out statement that captures Rihanna's relentless drive and will likely keep her on top. This album's not a victory lap; it's a whole new race."
Whether the mostly stellar reviews will translate into strong sales for Rihanna, who set a [article id="1673696"]Billboard chart record[/article] by racking up 20 Top-10 singles faster than any solo artist, with "We Found Love," remains to be seen.
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