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B'day (Exclusive)

B'day by Beyoncé
Released: Sep 2006
Label: Sony Urban Music/Columbia
Listening to B'Day, one can chart the course of a normal relationship: lust ("Suga Momma"), love ("Irreplaceable") and, finally, jealousy and estrangement ("Ring the Alarm"). The crunked up "Freekum Dress" introduces a new term to the modern urban lexicon, while the bluesy "Green Light" once again teams her up with Queen-makers the Neptunes. Overall, the album is harder and more aggressive than its predecessors -- thanks in part to production by Swizz Beats and Rich Harrison -- though it still seethes with Beyonce's trademark sass and soul.
Sam Chennault