Trends fade over time, but the mark of a great artist is the ability to bring relevant, lasting expression to his or her medium, while maintaining the different aspects of success in their field (marketability, fame, influence etc.) Bruno Mars has shown us time and time again the star quality that not only makes hit records, but also proves that there is still timeless talent in pop music today.
The album is appropriately titled “24k Magic” and was produced end to end by a team named “Shampoo Press & Curl.” While this group’s members aren’t specifically listed in the credits, most insiders believe it is likely comprised of Mars himself, Brody Brown, and Phillip Lawrence, who also wrote the whole album, together with assistance in different areas from notable artists like James Fauntleroy and Babyface. For the general theme of the project, Mars kept it retro as expected, but made sure there was something we can dance to alongside his trademark love ballads. Songs like “Straight Up & Down” and “Calling All My Lovelies” are reminiscent of a time where Keith Sweat would ask who could love you like him (Nobody), while tracks like “Finesse” and “Chunky” brought serious flashbacks of Michael Jackson’s “Remember The Time.”
Even though the album has a vintage theme, it doesn’t seem overly gimmicky, or disingenuous. Rather it accomplishes a true homage to the era that inspired it, while remaining fresh and energetic. Expect to hear quite a few of these tracks played at a club near year you, and on the radio for a long and profitable run as well. Take a listen below: