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Jazmine Sullivan bares it all on new album ‘Reality Show’, reviewed

Inspired by a previous relationship, which was abusive, Jazmine Sullivan bares it all on her new album Reality Show. We’re glad she’s back from hiatus.

Jazmine Sullivan
Photos: Courtesy of RCA Records

The GRAMMY nominee Jazmine Sullivan is back like she never left. She released her new album called ‘Reality Show’ on January 13. The twelve-track album consists of a great amount of varying content similar to a reality show. Her involvement in an abusive relationship fueled some of the tracks on this album such as ‘Forever Don’t Last’ and ‘Masterpiece Mona Lisa’.

Album cover art
Album cover art

The first track on her album ‘Dumb’, was released in May 2014 featuring Meek Mill, which is the only guest artist on the album. On this track, she expresses the anger of a woman who knows she’s being cheated on. Meek Mill lyrics defends men as he admits to being wrong but also twists the situation around as he mentions, “I know you know I ain’t wife no other chick but you shawty.” Therefore, I would say this was a great track to release off the album as the content is very relatable for both men and women.

‘Mascara’ could really be a woman’s anthem in some retrospect. I know several women who believe mascara should be worn every day, including myself. On this track, Jazmine Sullivan talks about the pressure women face on a daily basis because of a look that must be maintained. Some people may view this song as a “gold-digging” record because her man buys her everything she wants as long as her body looks right. However, women who wear makeup and workout know Jazmine Sullivan is 100% right when she says, “you never know who’s watching you.” What I liked most about the track was the boldness of her lyrics. “Yeah my hair and my a** fake, but so what? 
I get my rent paid with it and my tits get me trips
to places I can’t pronounce right.” Very few female R&B singers keep it this real on a song.

I love the beat from the ‘Brand New’ record. This song reminds me of a reality show as she talks about a man who decides to change when he starts making money. While he’s stunting with all the celebrities of the world, the girl is home alone. What’s interesting about the content is I never heard another artist address the “brand new” behaviour in reference to the music industry on a song before.

I really wonder how she developed the fervent lyrics for ‘Silver Lining’. Silver lining means hope in a negative situation, but Jazmine Sullivan expresses it towards financial problems. She sings her heart out about robbing someone but expresses her lack of wanting to hurt anyone. She talks about her responsibilities such as kids, bills and rent, a subject most people live in. She related to all the women out there who have their back up against the wall, so to speak. At least, anyone experiencing this situation won’t feel alone.

‘Hood Love’ is for all the loyal women willing to take someone’s life or go to jail for their man. She goes into detail about counting his money and being the queen for her king. The content on this album varies significantly, completely portraying her goal behind naming her album, ‘Reality Show’.

‘Let It Burn’ is a very peaceful and soulful song. Let it burn is synonymous with letting it happen and seeing where it takes you. She found the love of her life and she never wants the relationship to end. She talks about how love can show up unexpectedly and it’s no escaping once it found you. For anyone waiting for love, this song can be seen as a motivation to remain patient because love will find you.

‘Veins’ is a beautifully sung song about addiction to a man. She sings about a guy taking her down all the wrong paths and creating bad habits. She’s losing her mind because she feels she can’t live without him. “Hold me close and take me away I just want to scream your name.” I think she did an exquisite job of linking addiction and extreme love for a man, together. “Life’s too short not to have fun.” I love Jazmine Sullivan’s ability to make her voice sound different but still incredible in every style she chooses.

‘Forever Don’t Last’ is my favourite song on the album because she poured her heart out on this track. This song correlates to her previous abusive relationship. The core of this song is letting go. Her remembrance and attachment of the great times of her relationship had her trying to chase something that couldn’t be replenished. She learns over time that the relationship wasn’t meant to be hence the title.

Jazmine Sullivan provides advice for her listeners on this track called, ‘Stupid Girl’. A ‘Stupid Girl’ will do whatever a man says. She makes men sound like predators almost when she says, “We never have a clue we never see it coming train wreck headed for us but we never think of running.” I feel like she was providing advice on this track as she says she’s “begging you to use your head.” This record is very inspiring and shows her vocal ability. She also recorded this song in an acapella version. Comment below on which one you think was better.

‘Stanley’ is that record a woman can play in their car and hope her man gets the message. In this song, Jazmine Sullivan expresses tasks of cooking and cleaning and still feels unappreciated. Many women get their hair and nails done, yet their man never takes them out on dates.

Every female should have ‘Masterpiece Mona Lisa’ on repeat. Enlightening and powerful are two words that could do this track justice. This song is all about having high self-esteem and believing in you. In comparison to Mona Lisa, every woman should believe they are perfect. This song is a must listen to.

‘If You Dare’ is another motivational song inspiring listeners to start living life and not be afraid to conquer the world.

Jazmine Sullivan

I love the women empowerment tracks on this album and her creativity to develop diverse themes in each song. With all the drama-filled songs, it was nothing short of a reality show. Jazmine Sullivan doesn’t place restrictions on herself but rather speaks on everything from cheaters, love, addiction to self-esteem issues allowing herself to maximize her fans. As a bonus, Jazmine Sullivan has heartfelt lyrics and compelling vocal ability. I definitely recommend this album.

Written by Manny King John

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