It has been one momentious July for Frank Ocean who released his first formal album titled Channel Orange earlier tonight. Made available exclusively on iTunes a week sooner than expected, Ocean seems excited to have the album reach the ears of his eager fans. Channel Orange features the same deeply lyrical and mellow tracks that we have all adored in the past and have accepted as Frank Ocean’s signature style. The album features collaborations with Andre 3000 as well as John Mayer (but no vocals from the latter) and some tracks veer on the experimental side but tastefully so. “Sierra Leone”, #4 on the album, is one of the stand-out tracks on the new album as it paints a vivid picture of Ocean’s ample time spent in solitude as well as the home where he grew up. “Super Rich Kids” takes a different tone as it seems to critique the ungrateful, bratty, drug addicted kids of our generation. Overall, it is a diverse and thought provoking album that was well worth the long wait and anticipation.
Frank Ocean’s voice has come to feel like home for me as he sings out of his emotions from the many struggles in his life. This route has seemed to work wonders for Frank Ocean who’s music has generally been well received by all. His prior mix-tape album was heralded by critics as one of the best releases of 2011.
Earlier this month, Ocean posted an open letter on his Tumblr site that revealed his first love was with a man. Sending shock waves throughout the hip-hop and music communities, his gesture was well accepted by most fans and fellow artists. It was praised and seen as a “courageous and brave” thing to come out with. Surely, with that secret off of his chest and his new album released, Frank will be able to sleep easier at night and continue on to make the music we all have come and love so much.
Get his album now on iTunes.