A Naked Ballad

Rihanna never shies away from saying how she feels, but in this bearing track, she sings earnestly, and entirely stripped down.

Rihanna in concert

Ever see Rihanna in concert?

I have. Once. Although very disappointed by her lack of energy during her performances, her vocals were nothing short of impressive.

We see Rihanna in her loud outfits, singing in raunchy choruses, and alongside that, we see her tendency to evoke media frenzy. Like many who question her judgment, I, too, was skeptical of her behavior, but never of her talent.

In November, Rihanna dropped her album Unapologetic, which featured just how... unapologetic she really is with yet another collaboration with her infamous ex-lover (and abuser), Chris Brown on the track "Nobody's Business."

While I was not very pleased by her romantic decisions (it is her life after all, regardless of how public she makes it), her song choices on this album were versatile and pleasing. My personal favorite, "Stay," really gives us an intimate viewpoint into the mechanics of her heart — or at least, she sings like it does.

"Ohhh, the reason I hold on
Ohhh, 'cause I need this hole gone
Funny, you're the broken one, but I'm the only one who needed saving"

The song starts with a pacing piano build-up, and then her contemplative voice begins, stripped of the normal grandeur we all attribute to this glamorous pop star. The simplicity of the piano and guitar only highlighted the songstress' voice, which allowed her passion to seep through the lyrics.

Billboard termed this a "70s AM-radio melody that recalls Elton John or Billy Joel." Featuring Mikky Ekko, a Nashville-based singer, is an up-and-coming artist who is quoted by GigWise as having a "moody-guitar pop" sound. Keep an eye on him folks, he may be the next big thing. Originality in pop music is few and far between, and these two artists' combination is delicious.

Her performances of "Stay" on The X Factor (U.K.) and Saturday Night Live have been entrancing renditions. Make sure to check those out after you listen to the song! I'm looking forward to her Diamonds tour. Will you be there? Let us know what you think of her album!

For more music reviews, check out:

Christina Perri "Something About December"
One Direction "Little Things"
Bruno Mars "Moonshine"

Photo credit: Danny Clifford/Hottwire.net/WENN.com

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