After the horrid Run The World, Beyonce has unveiled another song off her upcoming album “4”. The song was performed live on the finale of American Idol in what could be described as an emotional performance where Beyonce gave her all to get across the song titled “1+1”.
Don’t let the urban-styled title fool you. This is not a song about math, nor is it about dancing or anything with street-cred. It’s about love, as simple as that. Beyonce’s vocals, though somewhat harsh (as in too overpowered) at some points of the song, are very good, as she usually is on ballads (Halo, If I Were A Boy, Listen are three impeccable songs that come to mind).
Beyonce starts: I don’t much know much about algebra, but I know 1+1 equals two and it’s me and you. That’s all we got when the world is through… because we got nothing but love. It is an interesting approach to the subject matter, to say the least. She later draws a resemblance with guns as well to get her point across before going into deep calls to “make love to [her]”.
Moreover, the song has basic instrumentation: they’re not very complicated, compared to other songs currently released, which leaves more focus on the lyrics and Beyonce to masterfully deliver the song.
1+1 is a song that is confusing to judge. Why so? because as a song in itself, it holds its own. It does its job of delivering the message clearly (and I do mean that literally, Beyonce’s pronunciation is somewhat impeccable) and it shows a different sound that Beyonce is definitely trying to introduce this era. But does it work as her follow-up single, as revealed by Ryan Seacrest on American Idol, to Run The World? Definitely not.
Beyonce is going way off mainstream with her releases so far and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. After all, Adele’s Rolling In The Deep is also not really mainstream and it’s currently the biggest song in the US. So an artist can go on the radio wild-side, so to speak, with good enough material. This is not good enough material. It’s good, but not that good.
And since Beyonce needed a radio-friendly single to help salvage what’s rest of her attempt to have a successful album launch, 1+1 fails at presenting her with a better launch pad for her upcoming work. Moreover, 1+1 does not feel very structured as a song. It’s very hard to see yourself finding this song “catchy” enough, even for a ballad, for you to sing to.
I hope Ryan Seacrest misspoke when he said this is Beyonce’s next single. It’s a good song that should be left where it belongs: as an album cut, on an album that is shaping up to be a huge let-down, both musically and from a marketing perspective, after a great era: I Am Sasha Fierce.