Thursday, May 14th, 2009

Pleasure P – Boyfriend #2

He used to be in Pretty Ricky. And now he isn’t. So there…


Al Shipley: While R&B females sweat whether they’re your official girl, Pleasure P is all too happy to be a side dish. But it all makes you wonder why he wasn’t content to be random horndog in Pretty Ricky #4, when being under the spotlight by himself suits him so poorly.

Jordan Sargent: I’m not sure that anybody understands why Pleasure P exists, but here he is with a bona fide hit that’s about as essential post-“Birthday Sex” as a popsicle after a milkshake. And yet, “Boyfriend #2” has undeniable summer jam qualities: a hot beat, lyrics about frivolous sex, an immediate chorus and an idiotic catch phrase. I expect nobody to care about it by September.

Martin Skidmore: It reminds me of Jarvis Cocker playing his illicit lover part, which is an odd thought while listening to smoochy R&B. I’m not especially taken with his voice, which sounds both strained and lightly autotuned – he sounds not far from a pastiche of the type, really.

Alex Macpherson: It’s not a bad song, and those synthbursts are enjoyable in a B-grade sort of way, but Pleasure P is an unremarkable beta male who tries to compensate for this by oversinging, and occasionally bellowing, lyrics which demand at least a semblance of suavity; he sounds more like the put-upon cuckold in this scenario.

Dave Moore: The whole girlfriend-stealing lothario schtick loses some of its oomph when there are no consequences whatsoever of being caught. Do these guys not understand that that’s part of what makes the whole conceit work in the first place? Or is this a post-“Big Love” thing, where different boyfriends just fill different needs? Then where’s the R&B track about Boyfriend #3 (counts romantic comedies as a guilty pleasure, good with kids), or Boyfriend #4 (does a decent job mowing the lawn, knows how to fix the toilet), or Boyfriend #5 (cuddles after sex as Boyfriend #2 is leaving to take Girlfriend #4’s cat to the vet)?

Michaelangelo Matos: Opening piano: oh, did Ne-Yo help write this one, too? Opening lines: “Turn around/Let me lick you from your neck down to your navel/’Cause shorty you look ready/Forget the bed/I wanna lay you on the table/So just hold it steady.” Answer: no. Absolute shameless-hussy music, always a big favorite.

Martin Kavka: The opening verse contains the line “Let me lick you from your neck down to your navel,” sung with quite jarring emotion and abandon. But that’s actually not all that erotic, is it? Isn’t cunnilingus a good thing? Aren’t mouths and ears erogenous zones? Isn’t Boyfriend #2 just spouting empty promises when he goes on to say “I’m not afraid of doing what he [boyfriend #1] doesn’t do”? And at the end of the day, isn’t Boyfriend #3 just around the corner? Ah, tropes of R&B heterosexuality, you never cease to amuse me. You are as bland as white bread.

Ian Mathers: Well, kudos to you for adapting Hertz’s old “we’re #2 so we try harder!” ad strategy to a song about cuckolding someone… I guess.

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