No disrespect intended, but Chaka Khan's new duet with Mary J. Blige, Disrespectful (hear it for free here) is a bit of a mess.
After 2004's stylish effort Classikhan, which chaka-fied legendary songs like To Sir With Love, Gold Finger or Crazy with the able help of the London Symphony Orchestra, this is going in the opposite direction. Maybe they want to appeal to young crunk fans, but I am not feeling for this.
It's a hard, funky tune, but it's also messy and neither here nor there. Chaka, who just a few months ago proved on the tribute CD "We All Love Ella" that she is indeed capable of singing better than ever, is firmly in screaming mode, as is Mary. Speaking of Screams, if this is indeed the handiwork of überproducers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, why did they have to channel one of their worst efforts, the similarly disjointed and all-over-the-place Scream by Janet and Michael Jackson?
I am still optimistic that I will find things I like on the upcoming album, but I definitely won't purchase it without giving it a good listen first.
I hear that Chaka, one of the very few great soul divas who did not have a strong gospel background, recently found Jesus. Thankfully, that did not stop her from giving the new album the potty-mouth-pun title Funk This. Let's just hope the reviews will deserve to be better than something that almost rhymes with that tilte.