Rihanna - Unapologetic (Clean) (Deluxe Edition)

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ITEM# 14859681

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ITEM#: 14859681

Recording information: Metropolis Studios, London, UK; Nightbird Studio, Los Angeles, CA; R Studios, Los Angeles, CA; Record One Studios, Los Angeles, CA; Roc The Mic Studios, New York, NY; SARM Studio's, Notting Hill, London; Triangle Studios, Atlanta, GA; Westlake Beverly Studios, Los Angeles, CA; WEstlake Studios, Los Angeles, CA; Westlate Santa Monica Recording Studios, Los Angeles, C. Illustrator: Mario Hugo. Photographers: Michael Muller; Melissa T. Forde. In 2012, right on schedule, Rihanna delivered her fourth annual November album. The singer took a different route with the lead single. She didn't go with a dramatic ballad like "Russian Roulette" or a big dance number like "Only Girl (In the World)" and "We Found Love." Instead, the nod went to a midtempo pop ballad, "Diamonds" -- as in "We're like diamonds in the sky" (rather than stars in a mine), a simple and effective, light in meaning yet massive in sonics, quasi-processional. Even with that change of pace, the possibility of it signaling an overall change in direction was slight. Not only is Unapologetic just as varied as Rihanna's past albums -- it's another timely refresh of contemporary pop music -- but it's a little more exploratory and a whole lot deeper, too. Continuing the trend that began on Rated R, Rihanna's at her best when she's flaunting. This goes for "Pour It Up," a characteristically chilly and booming Mike Will collaboration that might as well be a sequel to "Bandz a Make Her Dance," the producer's hit with Juicy J. Wrapped in a serene sneer, Rihanna's trash talk is something else. Moments such as that one are so convincing that the few everywoman heart-on-sleeve songs -- with the exception of the massive, slamming, wailing power ballad that is "What Now" -- don't sound all that natural. Two of the album's most intriguing, contrasting, and not-so-everywoman tracks appear consecutively during the latter half. Both of them were written and produced by Terius "The-Dream" Nash and Carl...

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