New Amerykah, Pt. 2: Return of the Ankh

( 4 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Andy Kellman
Return of the Ankh was supposed to be issued earlier than March 2010. It's just as well: 2008's stupefying 4th World War provided such a dense concentration of charged lyrics over ceaselessly vein-melting production work that Erykah Badu could have been forgiven for letting five years pass prior to unveiling something else to soak up. Return of the Ankh is a relief in that Badu does not attempt to trump herself with a set that is even more intense and powerful than its predecessor. Thematically, it's aligned with 4th World War's relatively lighter songs, "Me" and "Honey," more personal than planetary, less challenging sonically and lyrically. Most of it was actually ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Andy Kellman
Return of the Ankh was supposed to be issued earlier than March 2010. It's just as well: 2008's stupefying 4th World War provided such a dense concentration of charged lyrics over ceaselessly vein-melting production work that Erykah Badu could have been forgiven for letting five years pass prior to unveiling something else to soak up. Return of the Ankh is a relief in that Badu does not attempt to trump herself with a set that is even more intense and powerful than its predecessor. Thematically, it's aligned with 4th World War's relatively lighter songs, "Me" and "Honey," more personal than planetary, less challenging sonically and lyrically. Most of it was actually recorded at the same time as 4th World War. The list of collaborators, featuring Georgia Anne Muldrow, Madlib, Shafiq Husayn, Dilla, James Poyser, Ahmir Thompson, and Karriem Riggins, is similar, yet the makeup is drastically different, designed for instant kicked-back enjoyment. A pause, deep breath, and a "Here we go" is not required prior to putting it on. Instead, we get Badu playing around, in the best possible way, with sample-rooted songs like "Turn Me Away (Get Munny)" (a twist on Sylvia Striplin's "You Can't Turn Me Away" and the 1995 hip-hop anthem that sampled it, Junior M.A.F.I.A.'s "Get Money"), "Gone Baby, Don't Be Long" (a slightly silly new-love song that reworks Paul McCartney's "Arrow Through Me"), and "Umm Hmm" (its optimism reflected in that of its backbone, Ndugu & the Chocolate Jam Company's Earth, Wind & Fire-like "Take Some Time"). Though the album is so rich with sample-reliant songs that it sometimes resembles a glorified mixtape, a couple standouts were made from scratch. "Window Seat" should appeal to those who have wanted Badu to revisit that lissome sound of Baduizm songs like "On & On" and "Otherside of the Game," and it packs stunning stomp-and-clap breakdowns that sync up with Badu's most halting lines: "I need you to want me/I need you to miss me/I need your attention/I need you next to me." "Out My Mind, Just in Time" is a ten-minute finale that traces a trajectory of heartache across three movements, beginning innocently enough with a devotional (if pained and humorous) piano ballad that shifts into Muldrow's psychedelic, slow-motion soul-jazz as Badu gets increasingly fragmentary and tripped-out. By the end, she is renewed: "Finally I got a leading role/Introducing Super Dope/Starring in her episode/Hello new world/Out my mind." Actual next level, as always.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/30/2010
  • Label: Motown
  • UPC: 602527326764
  • Catalog Number: 001402302
  • Sales rank: 27,104

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 20 Feet Tall (3:25)
  2. 2 Window Seat (4:50)
  3. 3 Agitation (1:33)
  4. 4 Turn Me Away (Get Munny) (5:26)
  5. 5 Gone Baby, Don't Be Long (4:40)
  6. 6 Umm Hmm (3:46)
  7. 7 Love (6:02)
  8. 8 You Loving Me (Session) (1:05)
  9. 9 Fall In Love (Your Funeral) (6:07)
  10. 10 Incense - Kirsten Agnesta (3:27)
  11. 11 Out My Mind, Just In Time (10:22)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Erykah Badu Primary Artist, Percussion, Vocals, Hand Clapping, Hand Clapping, Foot Stomping, Cabasa
Jef Lee Johnson Guitar
James Poyser Piano, Keyboards, fender rhodes, Piano (Grand)
Karriem Riggins Drums
?uestlove Drums
Stephen Bruner Bass
Mike Chav Hand Clapping, Cajon, Foot Stomping
Georgia Anne Muldrow Bass, Drums, Keyboards
Kirsten Agnesta Harp
James Quest Hand Clapping
Tommy "Mandrill" Trajilo Guitar
Alfredo Grey Hand Clapping, Foot Stomping
Pilar Cote Vocals
Technical Credits
Paul McCartney Composer
Roy Ayers Composer
David Sancious Composer
Garry Glenn Composer
James Poyser Composer, Producer, Additional Production
Tom Soares Engineer
Doug Wimbish Composer
Sylvia Striplin Composer
Erykah Badu Arranger, Composer, Programming, Lyricist, Producer, Engineer, Executive Producer, Art Direction, Additional Production
Karriem Riggins Composer, Programming, Producer
Kyledidthis Art Direction
Madlib Producer
Shafiq Husayn Composer, Lyricist, Engineer
Alfredo Gray Inspiration
J Dilla Producer
Mike Chav Arranger, Programming, Engineer, Additional Production
Georgia Anne Muldrow Composer, Producer
Ta'Raach Programming, Producer
Xavier Jernigan Marketing
Chris Bell Engineer
P. Douthit Composer
O. Jackson Jr. Composer
J. Yancey Composer
Mike Chavaria Executive Producer
Paul Levatino Marketing
Waldo D. Benzworth Composer, Lyricist
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 4 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(2)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Classic Erykah Badu!!

    She is back again with more of that baduizm that her fans all love. You can put this on and play from start to finish. I'm a ballad lover so one of my fave is "Out my mind, just in time". Grab your favorite spot on your patio, turn up the head phones and take a journey with Erykah, Return of the Ankh!!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    I'm on board!

    I've always been a big Erykah fan so I was excited to cop her new album. I can't say that it's as good as her first but it's a cool album that you can listen to from top to bottom. Window seat is definitely a favorite. This album definitely has some songs that wiil make you laugh and dance, but lacks a little of the deeper cuts from previous releases. You can't deny her talent, and all who call themselves fans should support this album. All in all thumbs up for this release....

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews