Bloomfield, N.J‘s own K.J. Rogers dropped a 9-track project, To Whom It May Concern; normally, we wouldn’t cover R&B but exceptions are made where they are warranted. Let’s get into to it:
Right off the bat, there are two potentially huge songs here that if we were in charge of the rollout, would push to help garner attention.
“Down To Ride Lover Boy“, with its late 80’s/early 90’s sonics and Michael Jackson inspired vocal intonation, take position as a standout on the tracklist. “Anyone can be beautiful” but K.J. needs that ride or die!
“Say When” is the bop that so many struggling and used-to-be R&B artists need, to change their trajectory. It’s a bonafide smash, no matter who lays the vocals. It has lead single written all over it, top to bottom.
Potentially platinum records aside, there are some great and not-so-great things about TWIMC. Things, not moments. We want to stress that because the album is extremely consistent.
The intro, “Higher Plane“, as groovy as it is, is misleading in relation to the project in its entirety. You may push play and believe you’re going into a Beyoncé Renaissance sounding LP, which couldn’t be further from true, sonically. This would’ve been better placed last than first.
Two more tracks, “Are We Together” and “Love Too Hard HBOTL” make the cut as highlights. The former takes on a Drake-esque overtone, equipped with a man posing a woman with the infamous “what are we?”. The latter wins for its nostalgic vibe and like most of the album, stellar songwriting.
The downside of To Whom It May Concern is all sound-based. The mixing throughout is substandard at its best moments; flat out unpleasant at it’s worse, with vocals sitting far out of the mix and rough, at that. Also, some beats are mixed a bit spotty but that goes into nitpicking territory.
The track “Confide” features an uncredited female, as does another track; “Lisa & Will“, for all of its effort, is a too clear attempt at radio. It comes off more jingle than single. The unknown female vocalist has the worst performances of the tape by far but K.J. nearly saves the day at the tail-end of the track.
All-in-all, K.J. Rogers shows more promise than most R&B artists as the potentially next “big thing”. Some studio upgrades and curation and the once thriving genre, now seemingly on life-support, could have a jumpstart from K.J. Rogers. From this perspective, the title has new meaning, doesn’t it?