Alicia Keys ft. A$AP Rocky ‘Blended Family (What You Do For Love)’ Song Review

The hype for Alicia Keys’ comeback has been unreal. From social media posts about her anti makeup movement, to music outlets reporting about how great the album is going to be; she has been inescapable. But since a couple of the songs have been dropped the last month or so, I have heard pretty much nothing response musically. Everyone is still banging on about her social and political stances, but not about her music itself. Now this indicates to me two things, either the songs dropped and no-one really cared for them, or that because of the Kardashian story, she has lot a lot of musical coverage. Now either one is perfectly viable, so it is up to me, I guess, to see which one is the real answer to why Alicia Keys has gone quiet…

Judging from this track alone, I’m kinda swayed to the first answer. Now this track isn’t horrible, in fact far from it, but it is really, really, really boring. It just feels outdated, every single aspect feels like it would of been received better 15 years ago or so. From the acoustic progression (which is surprisingly poorly mixed), to the urban drum track in the background, it just feels out of place. I did enjoy however, the cloudy piano track that played faintly during certain sections and the ambient style synths that were included here and there for harmonic progression. The vocal performance, though strong, seems again outdated relying on melodic lines that just aren’t imaginative enough for the modern era of pop music. Lyrically however, I think the song is quite strong. Each line is heartfelt and well thought-out, there is definitely a degree of intelligence and sincerity from phrase to phrase. However, it is overshadowed by placement, for example the chorus. The falling vocal ostinato of ‘What You Do’ is an overused melody, and it was ten years ago. However my real issue with the track, was A$AP Rocky’s inclusion. It was utter cheese. Although lyrically again the section was fairly decent, at least higher than average for your appearance based rapper, but the delivery felt so cliche. It felt so antiquated, like something you would hear from P Diddy back in the day and I don’t know whether that was down to delivery or backing instrumentals, it just didn’t sit well. I’m not doubting the raw talent Alicia possesses or even that style A$AP Rocky has, but it felt kinda wasted here.

5/10 – Run of the mill acoustic, R&B mashup.



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