In retrospective this is the strongest promotional lead up to an album that Ciara has had in a long time. From the viral success of ‘Level Up’ to her countless televised performances and her massive 2019 Billboard Music Awards performance which gained massive praise, Ciara is a name that everyone is talking about again. ‘Beauty Marks’ is her seventh studio album and hears her rediscovering who she is as an artist. But the issue that lies within this album is that she’s already released all of the strongest material. ‘Level Up’, ‘Dose’, ‘Greatest Love’ and ‘Thinkin Bout You’ were strong singles that created a lot of hype, but from there the album loses momentum quickly. The opening track ‘I Love Myself’ featuring Macklemore is a tacky track that tries so hard to be inspirational. Instead it just feels a little flavourless. She then tries to get the energy flowing with ‘Set’, ‘Freak Me’ and ‘Girl Gang’ featuring Kelly Rowland but fails at giving listeners something memorable. And that’s where the rhythmic ‘Na Na’ also fails. She tries to put her stamp on a tropical meets rhythmic sound which is very popular at the moment but what she’s actually done is made a generic copy and hasn’t incorporated her unique feel into it. The album’s strongest moment comes from the offbeat ballad ‘Trust Myself’ which is a seductive and groovy little moment that sounds like classic Ciara. “So let my lips say what they want to say and let my hips move how they want to move. Let my hands do what they wanna do. I don’t trust myself around you”. Tieing it all together is the intimate piano ballad and title track ‘Beauty Marks’ which is a simple love song with a lot of heart. “If nobody’s perfect then all that I want is to be imperfect with you”. This album had a lot of potential and when you factor in the singles it is a strong collection that hears her lifting her game. But the rest of the new tracks just feel a little rushed and have been as polished as they others.
You can purchase a physical copy of the new album from Ciara HERE; https://www.sanity.com.au/products/2422131/Beauty_Marks