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Tremaine Aldon Neverson, also known as Trey Songz, has definitely come a long way from his 2005 debut I Gotta Make It with a mere first week’s total sales of 40,000 units sold. His increased sales and widespread success is undoubtedly shown in his fourth studio release Passion, Pain & Pleasure.

What die hard Songz fans can appreciate most from …Pleasure is that this is his most complete album to date and it can arguably be considered his “coming of age” album. With lyrics such as “I done came a long way from white t’s and Forces/ and as a man I understand we can’t force this” (lines from Tha Bizness-produced track “Alone”) and “Back to the old days/ you been with me since I had long braids (“Made To Be Together”), Songz has quickly become an R&B force to be reckoned with.

Of course, he blesses his loyal followers with the club anthem “Bottoms Up” featuring the femcee Nicki Minaj and his steamy, baby-making bedroom cuts such as the opener “Love Faces” and “Massage.” Additionally, the work he produces with featured artist Drake, on the track entitled “Unusual,” never ceases to amaze listeners. These songs are very reminiscent of his track listing on Trey Songz’ Ready (2009, Atlantic Records) project which, keep in mind has sold over 800,000 units to date.

But what strengthens this album the most along with Songz’ maturity is that the album is designed to focus on its underlying passion, pain and pleasure theme. With about every three or four tracks exploring and detailing each aspect of the album’s title, it’s as if he is almost telling a story.

Trey Songz takes chances with production techniques which aren’t normally a part of his musical formula and pulls it all off well.  For example, the Mario Winans-produced (and reportedly the official next single) “Can’t Be Friends” has Songz going head on with a violin rift along with other heavy, but steady instrumentation sitting comfortably in the groove. Although “Doorbell” is another panty-dropper joint amongst quite a few others similar to it, the album cut’s bongo-laced snares helps to keep his rhythm count in check.

Throughout this project, Trey Songz is able to maintain good vocal consistency. He knows where and when to collaborate with artists and his interludes cut straight to the point of his carefully crafted theme. If Songz keeps putting in the work ethic that he has developed, he may want to consider shedding his “Prince of Virginia” moniker and start considering taking the throne.


Listen to a few featured tracks by clicking play on The Rundown’s Mixpod.


Music Playlist at MixPod.com

You can also enjoy a special live performance from Trey Songz on his current “Passion, Pain & Pleasure” tour coming to a city near you.

So ladies and gentlemen, what did you think of this week’s Rundown with Aryez? If you agree or disagree or just want to share your thoughts on the new music you’ve heard either here or on the new album, log in and share with Aryez your opinions. Be the first to start the discussion or join any others below.

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