By Giulio Riso
Published: September 27th, 2017
Make way for the ‘Dutchess!’
After 11 years, the Black Eyed Peas (BEP) front-woman returns with her second solo effort, appropriately titled “Double Dutchess.” The 13-track album is as sonically diverse as one would expect from Fergie, whose style has always been changing. On her first album, “The Dutchess,” the singer proved that she was a capable artist, even without the BEP behind her. She showed off her vocal skills in her heart-warming track, “Finally,” her rapping skills in the hit “London Bridge,” and she served us with some of the catchiest tunes of the 2006-2007 year cycle, including “Fergalicious” and “Big Girls Don’t Cry.”
With “Double Dutchess” she tries to recreate the vibe from her debut album. It worked for some tracks, but others fell short. Fergie has been releasing singles to hype up the album since 2014. The first official single off of “Double Dutchess” is 2014’s “L.A. Love,” in which she raps about—yes—L.A. The year, 2016, saw, what many can call, her “official” comeback. Fergie released the polarizing single “M.I.L.F. $,” which was similar to her breakout solo single “London Bridge.” Later in 2016, Fergie released the third single off the album, “Life Goes On,” a track believed to be about the 2016 presidential election, but after the recent announcement of her divorce from husband of eight years, Josh Duhamel, the song can be interpreted in a more personal matter.
Other standout songs like the Rick Ross assisted “Hungry” and the self-love track “A Little Work” showcase fragments of the Fergie we love: sassy, confident, and honest. Although some songs have the potential to become as timeless as her previous hit singles, other tracks on the album lack that wow-factor that make for a true banger. “Tension” sounds like a rejected track from Britney Spears’ latest effort “Glory,” and on the reggae-infused “Love is Blind,” Fergie is trying a little too hard to sound like something she isn’t. Amidst Fergie’s separation from Duhamel, the album has plenty of emotional tracks that we can assume are about her relationship with the actor. On “Save It Til Morning,” she begs her lover to leave their arguments for the morning. However, Fergie truly shines in “Love Is Pain”. Her incredible range is finally showcased in its entirety and the emotion and pain in her voice cuts through the track like a knife.
Overall, “Double Dutchess” isn’t much of a step forward for Fergie, but it is certainly not a terrible album. Die-hard fans will eat it up, and due to its musical diversity, it will most likely earn the singer some new fans. Hopefully, with the Nicki Minaj featured song, “You Already Know,” Fergie will reach the chart success she deserves.