Estelle, "All of Me" (HomeSchool/Atlantic Records)
British singer Estelle prefers to take her time. It took her four years to produce her 2008 album, "Shine," which included her breakthrough Grammy-winning single, "American Boy," featuring Kanye West.
Now, after nearly another four years, Estelle releases her latest album, "All of Me" — and once again, it's well worth the wait.
Estelle sings with her Brit-accented delivery mixed with uptempo dancehall tracks and heartfelt ballads that touch the soul. She bounces back-and-forth from rapping and singing on "Speak Ya Mind" and "The Life," informing listeners that she hasn't missed a step since her last album a few years ago.
The track names might indicate that "All of Me" is all about the somber state of breakups. But that is not the case with Estelle, who focuses on the positive aspects of departing from her mate.
On the Akon-written "Thank You," Estelle shows gratitude toward her cheating mate for their inevitable split. She pours her heart out on the chorus: "These tears I cry sure won't be the last/They will not be the last ... no/This pain inside which never seems to pass/It never seems to pass me by/So I thank you/Said I thank you/Yes I thank you/For making me a woman."
"Wonderful Life" has an easy-going feel, as Estelle sings about trying to find the simple pleasures of life during a rocky day. On the album's single, "Break My Heart," featuring Rick Ross, the singer struggles with her trust issues on the midtempo, radio-friendly track.
In total, Estelle's album is a solid piece of work, and she proves that her "all" is more than enough.
CHECK OUT THIS TRACK: Estelle boasts about the high life on "International (Serious)," featuring Chris Brown and Trey Songz, who takes a stab at rapping.
Follow Jonathan Landrum Jr. on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/mrlandrum31
© 2012, The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.
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