Monday, February 16, 2015

Album Review: Non-Fiction by Ne-Yo

Another concept album from Ne-Yo and again it works.  This album isn't as good as Libra Scale, but again I find myself being entertained by a Ne-Yo album.  I actually enjoyed the story in this one and wanted to see how it was going to end.  That's rare for a concept album.

Before we get into the album let me talk about something else.  I haven't heard the latest album from Taylor Swift as she hasn't made it available for streaming, but one of my consistent complaints about Swift is that she writes too much about her own life, or at least promotes it as such.  I've felt that for her to become the voice of her generation, as I believe she could, that she would need to expand he view.  But I'm starting to understand that in a world of Twitter, Instagram, etc. that her perspective actually does define her generation.  It's a generation that is currently defined by their usage of social media to turn their lives into a story that everyone else in their lives or anyone interested can read.  In fact Swift was way ahead of everyone, except Kanye West.  In 2008 when he put out 808s and Heartbreak  it really did usher in a new era in hip-hop and R&B where many artist make these personal, sometimes auto-biographical albums.

I've talked about this before and this brings us to this latest album from Ne-Yo.  Whether it is really auto-biographical or not doesn't matter.  It is presented in a story as told from Ne-Yo's perspective as if it is his story.

The story is pretty simple.  He's a star who is surrounded by women who he uses and who use him.  One night he meets a woman who is different.  She could care less about his fame and really wants love.  He pursues her and they end up becoming a couple.  Two problems crop up.  One is he wants her to take advantage of his fame and his money and doesn't understand why she won't.  Second he tells her that he needs her to be his escape.  He really doesn't have much left to give her with everyone taking so much from him, because of his fame, but he wants her to give him an escape from his fame.   Then it all falls apart as he is tempted by the old life he had before and wants her to join him in going back into that life.  She tells him no and leaves him.  At the end he bumps into her and finds that she has moved on and found someone who can actually give her want she wants.

All in all it's a fun album.  Ne-Yo is a great singer.  Problems with the album are pretty simple.  There isn't a great single on here and the lyrics are a bit weak.  The story is fun but with better writing it could be much better.  At least in the end she leaves him, he does seem very shallow, for someone who is better suited to what she needs.  As he says early on he's using the women who use him and so how can he say bad about them.

Following the Rhapsody rating method I give it 2 out of 5 stars for Not Bad.


  1. He is a very good singer, and this is an excellent review.

  2. Speaking of music and social media, I just want to report that the top of the U.S. trends on Twitter at this very moment is "Lesley Gore," which I find remarkable. Rest in peace, Ms. Gore, who sang "It's My Party" ("and I'll cry if I want to"), as has every one of us at some point in our lives when things weren't going as we had hoped. Here she is performing a swinging medley and then chatting on the Nov. 10, 1969, episode of Mike Douglas.