He’s finally done it: the man that famously counseled André 3000 to unleash his crazy side has produced a work as cohesive, enjoyable and bizarre as he always promised. Comparisons to The Love Below are as inevitable as they are warranted – where André gave us Prince and jazz-steeped sex-anthems, Green takes the revivalist route, channeling neo-soul and homage-laden Motown into fourteen of the most economical songs he’s ever written. The Closet Freak isn’t known for his restraint (past albums were brutally creative, but dreadfully messy), nor will he ever live down Gnarls Barkley, but here Green comes into his own, limiting guest spots to two fantastic features. Not a single verse of The Lady Killer is hip-hop, a bold decision but a successful one: Green’s a showman at heart, and channels all that same energy and contradictory, metaphorical imagery into his crooned vocals. The Lady Killer himself is an alter-ego, a Casanova that just might be actually murdering the women he seduces, as in the chilling starkness of “Bodies” and the tear-jerking (necrophiliac?) balladry of “Wildflower”.
This review didn’t have to mention the colossal success of “Fuck You” for a reason: Cee Lo hit this one out of the park.
Originally published in The Peak, November 2010.