Table of Contents
The Love Album: Off the Grid
- Genre: R&B/Soul
- Date: 15 Sep, 2023
- Content: explicit
- Track(s): 23
- ℗ 2023 Love Records
Diddy’s combined talents as musician and producer are evident on “The Love Album,” released the same week he won the MTV VMA for 2023 Global Icon. It also comes after he chooses to return the publication rights to songs from his influential 1990s record label, Bad Boy, which turns 30 this year.
“The Love Album: Off the Grid,” Diddy’s first solo album in 17 years, is now available and features a wide range of R&B artists, including Mary J. Blige, K-Ci, Babyface, Justin Bieber, and the Weeknd, as well as up-and-comers like Jazmine Sullivan and Coco Jones. The 23-song album is Diddy’s first solo studio album since 2006’s “Press Play” (excluding Diddy Dirty Money, which was more of a collaborative effort). It was released under Diddy’s Love Records banner. However, no Diddy record has ever been a “solo” effort. An extensive range of celebrities are featured on this one, including H.E.R., Summer Walker, John Legend, Teyana Taylor, French Montana, Fabolous The-Dream, Busta Rhymes, Dawn Richard, Kalenna, Ty Dolla $ign, Jacquees, Kehlani, 21 Savage, Swae Lee, Jeremih, Jozzy, Nova Wav, Kalan Fr.Fr, and Nija.
The Album Art is brilliantly intuitive, vibrant, and simple. Diddy is depicted in an animated form striding toward the camera on a red background, shirtless and with his arms swinging, as he progresses toward saving “R&B.”
Tracks And Features
The first song on Diddy’s new album, “Brought My Love,” includes Grammy Award-winning producer and singer-songwriter The-Dream, who adds his distinctive falsetto to an interpolation of “Rise” by Herb Alpert. Diddy has already sampled the track, but not for his single. He used the 1979 funk instrumental as the basis for his co-production of Biggie’s “Hypnotize” with Deric “D-Dot” Angelettie and Ron Lawrence.
For “What’s Love,” Diddy enlists the songwriting and producing team known as Nova Wav, comprised of Brittany “Chi” Coney and Denisia “Blu June” Andrews. They collaborated with Beyoncé on her danceable “Renaissance” album and even received a Grammy. Additionally, they have written and produced songs for various artists, including Jay-Z, Rihanna, Ariana Grande, Kehlani, DJ Khaled, H.E.R. Busta Rhymes, and Dirty Money, a musical group of singers and dancers. Dawn Richard and Kalenna Harper reached their peak of popularity in 2009 when they were both signed to Bad Boy Entertainment and are featured on the song “Deliver Me.”
Along with pop stars like Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande, Diddy recruits Nija Charles, an American singer-songwriter and record producer who made a name by penning songs for the Carters (Jay-Z and Beyonce). Her vocals float above an R&B beat that sparkles. Jozzy is brilliant in “Homecoming.” The singer-songwriter is most known for penning “Old Town Road,” Beyoncé’s “Lemonade,” and “Virgo’s Groove,” among other successes. However, since May 2022, Jozzy was unveiled as the first signee of Diddy’s Love Records label imprint, she has quickly created her career.
Diddy declares at the start of “Pick Up,” one of the album’s more notable contemporary R&B songs, “We off the grid.” Jacquees, best known for his 2016 single “B.E.D.”, and Fabolous, a favourite rapper of the ’00s with a smooth voice, lend a hand. Swae Lee introduces the song “Tough Love,” in which he sings alone over a sluggish and sensual arrangement.
A pulsing, hip-hop rhythm complements summer Walker’s softly layered melodies in “Stay Long,” another tune without vocals from Diddy, which flawlessly leads into the next item on the tracklist. This time, jozzy returns on “It Belongs to You,” without Diddy’s vocals. This honeyed song features The Weeknd, French Montana, Diddy, and 21 Savage and has been called his “final feature” since he famously said he wouldn’t work on any projects “unless daft punk ever gets back together.”
On “Need Somebody,” the main vocalist is “Heaux Tales” singer Jazmine Sullivan. Diddy declares to create an “incredible amusement park ride of love” for the woman he is with towards the song’s conclusion. On the song “Mind Ya Business (Bosses in Love),” Ty Dolla $ign and Kehlani come together with Diddy, Slim Wav (who contributed to Summer Walker’s 2021 album “Still Over It”), and Roark Bailey as co-writers. For this X-rated, nearly two-minute interlude, Jozzy makes her third appearance on the album, living up to Diddy’s vow of bringing back his hallmark “baby-making music.”
On the song “Reachin’,” which was composed by a who’s who of R&B rebels, including PartyNextDoor and composer Lydia Asrat (also known as Doja Cat’s former manager and CEO of boutique management firm 10Q Management), Ty Dolla $ign and Coco Jones trade verses. Along with Kalan, a Roc Nation signee, “Stay Part 1” features American singer-songwriter and former Jodeci member K-Ci.Fr. Mary J. Blige soars over this track, which sounds like it was taken from the 1990s. In the third chorus, they sing together, with Diddy joining them. For “Closer,” the acclaimed singer-songwriter’s first release since 2021, Teyana Taylor makes a rare trip back into the studio. She is also listed among the song’s writers.
The rock-influenced song “Boohoo,” which features Jeremih, has just three authors listed as credited (in contrast to the lengthy list on other songs): Diddy, Jeremih, and Mick Abram Schult, who produced Jeremih’s debut and second albums. For a brief, violin-assisted interlude, Afrobeat pioneer Burna Boy alternates between his deep baritone and upper falsetto to lull listeners towards the record’s conclusion.
This memorial song, performed by Diddy, Babyface, and John Legend, honours both the mother of his children and his late ex-girlfriend Kim Porter. H.E.R. Co-writers who completed the Love Album’s final track included Diddy, H.E.R., Roark Bailey, and Marco Rodriguez-Diaz, known by his stage name Infamous and possibly best recognized for his collaborations with Lil Wayne
|1||Brought My Love (feat. The-Dream & Herb Alpert)||Diddy||3:18|
|2||What’s Love||Diddy & NOVA WAV||3:14|
|3||Deliver Me||Diddy, Busta Rhymes, Dawn Richard, Dirty Money, Kalenna & Diddy – Dirty Money||3:19|
|4||Stay Awhile||Diddy & Nija||2:35|
|5||Homecoming||Diddy & Jozzy||3:24|
|6||Pick Up (feat. Fabolous)||Diddy & Jacquees||4:07|
|7||Tough Love (feat. Swae Lee)||Diddy||4:22|
|8||Stay Long||Diddy & Summer Walker||2:25|
|9||It Belongs To You||Diddy & Jozzy||2:37|
|10||Another One of Me (feat. The Weeknd & 21 Savage)||Diddy, The Weeknd & French Montana||3:40|
|11||Intermission (Side B)||Diddy||2:39|
|12||Moments (feat. Justin Bieber)||Diddy||4:33|
|13||Need Somebody||Diddy & Jazmine Sullivan||4:18|
|14||Mind Your Business (Bosses in Love) [feat. Kehlani & Ty Dolla $ign]||Diddy & Kehlani||4:51|
|15||Nasty (Interlude)||Diddy & Jozzy||1:40|
|16||Reachin’ (feat. Ty Dolla $ign & Coco Jones)||Diddy||3:10|
|17||Stay Part 1 (feat. Jeremih)||Diddy, Kalan.FrFr & K-Ci Hailey||3:36|
|18||I Like (feat. Mary J. Blige)||Diddy & Mary J. Blige||3:44|
|19||Closer To God (feat. Teyana Taylor)||Diddy||4:04|
|20||Boohoo (feat. Jeremih)||Diddy||3:09|
|21||Burna Boy Interlude||Diddy & Burna Boy||1:03|
|22||Kim Porter (feat. John Legend)||Diddy & Babyface||7:17|
|23||Space||Diddy & H.E.R.||5:55|
Although there are some good parts in The Love Album, they are relatively brief. Since his debut album in 1997, Diddy has tended to let the guest performers bear most of the load on his solo releases. It’s even more true in this situation. The guests have plenty of time to shine because he is scarcely audible on numerous songs. In keeping with his reputation, there are multiple examples of exceptional production, significantly improving the monotonous, flaccid beats that now dominate the radio airwaves. Indeed, Diddy is making an effort to save R&B with this lineup.