“Go to ‘Mimi’ on your contacts – press delete.”
Oh, Mariah. Oh, woof. Mariah Carey went ahead and dropped the title track from her long-awaited 14th studio album, “The Art of Letting Go,” this afternoon, and it’s a limp, meandering break-up song filled to the brim with silly vocab words like, “dominion” and “reverberating,” and awkward, unimaginative phrases like, “Letting go ain’t easy, it’s just exceedingly hurtful.” Even Mariah’s characteristically strong vocals can’t save this dated, empty ballad. How did we manage to go from “#Beautiful” to this?
The campaign for Mariah’s 14th studio album actually began way back in August of last year with the release of the forgettable, “Triumphant (Get ‘Em).” When the song failed to make an impact, it was quickly labeled a promotional single and the album was pushed back until July 2013. This past May saw the release of the wonderfully breezy, “#Beautiful” featuring Miguel. “#Beautiful” fared better on the charts than “Triumphant (Get ‘Em),” peaking at #15 on the Billboard Hot 100, but Mariah’s team still wasn’t happy and the album was pushed back AGAIN to allow Mariah to continue working in the studio. The Darkchild produced, “The Art of Letting Go” is apparently the product of that hard work. Sigh.
I respect that Mariah isn’t trying to compete with the Miley Cyrus’s and Ke$ha’s of the world, and she shouldn’t, but she’s gotta do better than this. “The Art of Letting Go” has very little mainstream appeal and Mariah needs radio on her side again if she wants to make another “The Emancipation of Mimi”-style comeback. I’ve been a die-hard Mariah fan since the 3rd grade when the “Daydream” album was literally my most prized possession – I am pulling for her. She’s just got to figure out where she fits in today’s musical landscape.
Listen to “The Art of Letting Go” via Mariah’s Facebook page. It’s also available on iTunes now. There’s no scheduled release date for the album yet, but hopefully it will arrive sometime next year. Mariah has reportedly worked with Jermaine Dupri, Randy Jackson, The-Dream, R. Kelly, and many others.