The Vault: ‘I Like’ – Keri Hilson

Rating: B+

After releasing her debut album, Keri was approached to do a song for the German movie Zweiohrküken back in 2009. The result was the beautiful ‘I Like’, which peaked at number 1 in Poland, Germany, and Slovakia and hit the top 40 in the UK.
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How Much: Keri Hilson

After stepping away from the pen in 2009 Keri Hilson was able to hit gold with her debut album ‘In A Perfect World.’ Spawning off the worldwide hit ‘Knock You Down’, Keri was able to establishing herself as a solo act, but she still needs to prove herself as a force to be reckoned with. Hopefully her second album, ‘No Boys Allowed’, will do just that.

‘No Boys Allowed’ was released on tuesday, preceded by ‘Pretty Girl Rock’, ‘Breaking Point’ and the street single ‘The Way You Love Me’.  While ‘Pretty Girl Rock’ is slowly climbing up the charts, the rest of the singles failed to ignite. All is not lost though considering that Keri has had a massive promotional campaign.
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Performance Corner: Keri Hilson Nails It

Over the past few weeks Keri Hilson have been on promotion overdrive pushing her single ‘Pretty Girl Rock’. The single got off to a slow start, but has been dramatically rising on the radio and is currently number 40 on itunes.

All of the performances have been the same with Keri lacking some vocal strength. Her performance today was more simple than the others, but it showcased Keri’s vocal talent more than any other.

The best part of the performance though was when she mixed the Jame Blunt hit ‘Your Beautiful’ into the song before the last chorus. Considering the crowd that watches the Continue reading

Tracklist: ‘No Boys Allowed’ Keri Hilson

Keri Hilson is gearing up to release her sophomore album, ‘No Boys Allowed’ on December 21st. The album was put on Amazon yesterday with a pre-order option revealing the tracklist and 30 second clips to each song.

I have to say that I was not interested in the project until I heard the clips of each song. Her first album has some good songs on it, but after hearing ‘The Way You Love Me’ I lost a lot of respect for Keri as an artist.

The album is meant to bring Keri in a Continue reading

Performance Corner: Keri Hilson

With a little more than a month until the release of her sophomore album ‘No Boys Allowed’, Keri Hilson has kicked in her promotional campaign with a performance on Jay Leno.

While Keri has yet to make a dent chart wise with her first two singles, its evident that the album is still being put into full gear. With reports of the artwork being shot this past week, I’d say it is still probable that the album comes out on its release date of December 21st.

I’m still surprised that ‘Pretty Girl Rock’ has yet to chart, but Continue reading

‘Don’t Look Now’- Far East Movement feat. Keri Hilson

Rating: B-

Far East Movement has literally seen their success explode out of thin air. Their song ‘Like A G6’ is gearing up to take the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100, even though it has been out for months. The boys seem to have caught the attention of their label, who has released their second single as a free download on itunes this week. ‘Don’t Look Now’ is the second single from the bands album ‘Free Wired’. With ‘Like A G6’ still gaining audience impressions and selling more copies each week, it is smart for the group to capitalize on the songs success by releasing it’s follow up. Most acts only get one shot to make it big and keep it, but is ‘Don’t Look Back’ the right song to prevent the group from becoming a one-hit wonder? Continue reading

‘Pretty Girl Rock’- Keri Hilson

Rating: B+
A few weeks ago I reviewed Keri Hilsons horrible attempt at a first single, ‘Breaking Point’. The song has yet to chart on the Billboard Hot 100 so as Swizz Beatz says Keri is ‘onto the next one’ releasing new single ‘Pretty Girl Rock’ today. The track is a good crossover track for Keri and will have her being played on both the pop and R&B stations. The track is Keri’s strongest to date since ‘Knock You Down’ and should be a good push leading to the release of her second album ‘No Boys Allowed’.

The track was evidently written by Ne-Yo, who has Continue reading

‘Breaking Point’- Keri Hilson


Rating: C

Keri Hilson is returning later this year with her sophomore album ‘No Boys Allowed’. She premiered her new single, ‘Breaking Point’, and explained that her new music was going to take a female empowerment theme. Keri saw some success in 2009 with her debut album, ‘In a Perfect World’ going gold, and having a top 3 single with ‘Knock You Down’. If she has any chance of becoming a major force she needs to nail this album. Sadly, ‘Breaking Point’ does not appeal to the masses and may be a rough start for her second album.

Keri teams up with Timbaland for the single. Their relationship goes back a few years now, since Keri was featured in his hit ‘The Way I Are’. I have to say that they beat is actually the strongest part of the song. Theres a doo-wop/reggae feel to the song, with a strong bass line and Timbaland’s signature beat boxing. The organ in the chorus is also a nice touch. Timbaland and Keri usually have great chemistry together because his beats really bring out the quality in her voice. The problem is the song itself.

Keri is a well-known songwriter so I’m shocked with this single. I feel like there is no method to the song. Most of the chorus feels rushed, and there are far to many runs making the song almost impossible to sing along too. Vocally there is no denying that Keri sounds good, but she is showing off her voice too much. I do love the background vocals that she is doing though, because they are subtle enough that they actually sound like part of the beat. With a song that is both hard to follow and sing along too, I find it highly unlikely that it will be picked up by Top 40 radio. Keri has stated in the past that she wants mainstream success and she will not get it unless Top 40 radio embraces her.

The bridge to the song is the worst part; I didn’t realize that Beyonce was featured on the song. Keri has lashed out about Beyonce before, but she sounds exactly like her when she is talking during the song. Talking during a song should be illegal because it makes no sense. I understand doing it during a concert, but there is no reason it should be done on a radio single. Beyonce has already been criticized for it, so Keri should have just stayed away.

As much as I want to see Keri succeed I can’t say that this will work. The song has grown on me since first listen, but it is not sticking like it should. Keri has had trouble with singles in the past. She released five from her debut album, and only two of them became hits. With little radio support I think it is risky to release this as a first single. I can easily see her labeling this song as a ‘buzz track’ in a month and then releasing another song. Whatever she and her team decide to do it better happen fast. With all of these new releases coming out for the years end it will be difficult for Keri to find success.

‘Got Your Back’ T.I. feat. Keri Hilson


Rating: B-

After a year of being in Jail and two years since his last album, rapper T.I. is now ready to hit the music scene again with his new album ‘King Uncaged’ on August 17. He released the buzz single ‘I’m Back’ a few weeks ago, which received minor radio-play from the R&B stations. With all of the drama surrounding his social life, the album is highly anticipated and is expected to explore some of the social and personal lesson he has learned the past year. ‘Got Your Back’ is the first official single to be released, featuring songstress Keri Hilson.

T.I was thrust to superstardom after his last album, ‘Paper Trail’, helmed two number 1’s singles on the Billboard Hot 100. ‘Got Your Back’ follows a similar formula that ‘Whatever You Like’ followed back in 2008; sing-along raps with a pop chorus. Jim Jonsin, a frequent collaborator with T.I, produced the song. Normally Jonsin creates great beats (look at ‘Sweet Dreams’ or ‘Lollipop’), but this song almost sounds like a nursery rhyme. The synth lead melody line it too distracting and over powers Keri’s voice. There is nothing that is hip-hop about this beat, which is a shame because the song is showing signs of T.I. selling out.

I really do blame T.I. for turning hip-hop into pop. Even though he claims that he is still a rapper, this song does not prove that. His rapping is more like singing, and with such a weird beat the song just songs catered for Top 40 radio. When looking back at his older music like ‘Bring Em Out’, it’s a shame that such a good rapper turned so commercial. It’s easy for a rapper to be commercial without selling out (i.e. Jay-Z, Kanye West), but T.I. is blatantly making music just to receive a hit, leaving his true rapping talent behind. Keri Hilson is the songs saving grace. She works her voice really well in the song, using her high register for most of the song. I will say that I think they are a good pairing, but the song could have been much better since they have each proven themselves to be quite creative musically.

That being said I am sure the song will be a hit. The songs construction is quite common with a rapper doing the verses and a female singer singing the chorus, so there is no new territory being covered here, but it has always worked. Still, there is no way that the song will hit number 1 on any chart. It’s catchy enough to reach around number 6 or 7 on the Billboard Hot 100, but I would be surprised if it got any higher since is it so unoriginal. I am just disappointed that after all T.I. has gone through he decided to release this as his first musical statement. Hopefully there will be some musical growth on this album, and we wont see ‘Paper Trail’ 2.0.

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