(photo credit: Olivia Malone/PR)
Singer Kelis would much rather be known for her jerk sauce than those milkshakes nowadays. Obviously, though, she knows the way to someone’s heart is through his stomach, and so, after going through formal culinary training at Le Cordon Bleu, she’s just released a new album entitled “Food.”
(photo credit: Ninja Tune, found on The Boom Box)
I’m no music expert, but when someone makes an album and names it after my #1 priority, my ears perk up. The same way they do when someone says “pie.” So last week I sat down with CS Food+Drink editor Lea Faminiano and we dug into the musical feast together. Here are our first impressions, while drinking incredibly cheap champagne:
Top 10 Thoughts on Kelis’s New Album “Food,” While Listening To “Food”
10. (We’re 2 minutes in and there’s been no mention of bacon.) “I’m concerned.”
9. On “Breakfast” – “This song makes me feel like we’re walking around NYC on a hot summer’s day and someone just handed us free ice cream sandwiches. Coolhaus sandwiches. Obviously we’re wearing overalls.”
8. On “Cobbler” – Is cobbler Kelis’ favorite dessert? We’re so curious. Cobbler is delicious.
7. There’s so much funk and soul on this album. If Kelis got together with Solange, we would die; the cool-girl vibes would just be too much.
6. On “Forever Be” – “Are those STRINGS?” We’re into it. (Fun fact: Kelis played the violin growing up, AND the saxophone, AND the piano – Alicia Keys watch your back, girl!).
5. Kelis is DEEP. We never knew!
4. — This is when we got sidetracked by another famous music+food collaboration, Cookin’ With Coolio. “I’m the ghetto Martha Stewart, the black Rachel Ray.” It’s hard not to get distracted by things like this.
3. This album has a ton of 90s influences and we’re so, so good with that – the 90s were awesome. Also, “Dreamer” feels like it should be filtered through “1977” on Instagram with a lot of glowing light leaks.
2. On “Bless The Telephone” – “Well, this is adorable. Our indie-folk friends will just love it.”
1. “I don’t think she’s singing about food. It’s more… ‘If music be the food of love!’”
There’s a lot going on in this album: soul, funk, some African drums, pianos and strings, deep cuts and bubbly, catchy singles. It’s full of tasty morsels (sorry, it’s really hard to not use food metaphors right now), sometimes sweet (like the chorus of “Breakfast”), sometimes saucy (all of those upbeat, breathy introductions and the considered use of cowbell, like on “Friday Fish Fry”). Ultimately, though, it’s all delicious, and we’ve fallen in love. Play on, Kelis. Play on.
The album is available for purchase and download today (April 22nd) – to stream it for free as Lea and I did, you can go to NPR.org.