Urban Contemporary, 2003
Have you seen Kelis’s over-the-top music video for the first single off Tasty, Milkshake? Here’s some bad news: the rest of the CD is nothing like Milkshake. There are some explicit lyrics here, but Kelis is not exactly in the league of Lil’ Kim yet. On the whole Tasty is a well-produced CD utilizing the paid services of the Neptunes behind the studio knobs. The tracks are laidback and minimalistic, with each song having only one single refrain or hook that Kelis repeats throughout it.
Milkshake is a cute track that doesn’t rely just on the shock value of the double meanings behind the title, although a check on some urban language dictionary reveals that “milkshake” has at least six dirty meanings, the most conventional being a double entendre for the aftermaths of a fellatio session. The song is too catchy for words. But other tracks with “explicit lyrics” are far less risque than Milkshake: Trick Me has some four-lettered words but they are used in the context of anger at a cheating lover. Keep It Down and In Public sound dirty, are maybe dirty, but not actually dirty. Kelis teases coyly after going all the way with Milkshake.
Which isn’t a bad thing, really, as the tracks on this CD are on the whole catchy and fun. Most of them, however, lack a distinct hook that catches my attention during the first listen. Tasty simmers slowly instead of shooting out of the gate to grab the listener. But there is a sameness to the production of values of the Neptunes that plague the tracks they work on, and I have to admit that Tasty gives off a “yet another of their works – ho hum” vibe. Kelis roping in buddies like her beau Nas to Andre 3000 from OutKast to work on production and guest rap doesn’t help remove the slightly tired sound of this CD much. Besides, the track she worked on with Andre 3000, Millionaire, is made redundant by the OutKast’s own superior Hey Ya!, of which Millionaire feels like a watered down version of.
I find Tasty a charming little CD. But no matter how listenable it is, the special something that grabs hold of me and keep me playing the CD again and again is missing. Sure, it’s tasty, but I don’t really feel that my taste buds are on fire at the end of the day.