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Chris Brown, ‘Fine China’ – Song Review

Chris Brown Fine China
Sony

Chris Brown is growing up, and no, we’re not talking about his public persona or behavior. We’re speaking strictly on the basis of the R&B singer’s music. He gets his Michael Jackson on in the vintage-sounding, vibrant new single ‘Fine China’ from his forthcoming album, ‘X.’

While Breezy has always trafficked in urban-infused R&B, as opposed to the silky smooth, leading man-style R&B, he’s gotten in touch with his more gentlemanly, Justin Timberlake  side with ‘Fine China,’ a groover and a shaker that he co-wrote. Is this Breezy’s ‘Suit & Tie?’ Well, it sure sounds like it!

Brown did say that he channeled the King of Pop, Stevie Wonder and Sam Cooke on this track — he’s not kidding, nor was he exaggerating or boasting. It’s exactly what he did.

The shimmying song has a similar tempo to ‘Billie Jean,’ with ’80s backbeats and plenty of Jacksonian “Woo-hoos” and “whoas” sprinkled throughout the song. We’re not gonna lie. We were sitting back, patiently waiting for Breezy to toss a few “Shamones” (Jackson’s signature, nonsensical lyrical phrase) into the mix.

Breezy did take quite a bit of heat for his histrionic tribute to Jackson at the 2010 BET Awards, but he’s rebounded beautifully with this tribute-like song. You can pretty much imagine Breezy wearing floods, loafers, white socks and a bedazzled glove while dancing to this song, as it’s template homage to Jackson.

He makes use of his decent falsetto, which soars over harmonies and a disco beat in the chorus. It’s obvious his renewed romance with Rihanna, and the forgiveness of a good woman, has softened him musically.

He compares the woman he loves to “fine china” and says It’s alright / I’m not dangerous / When you’re mine / I’ll be generous,” which sounds like the public apology he needed to make.

Overall, ‘Fine China’ is a memorable R&B track with strings that borrows heavily from Jacko and follows the same trajectory as JT’s reinvention. That throwback sound is happening in the genre right now, and Breezy is paying his respects.

Finally, we can hear him for the musician he is, as opposed to the rest of the drama that follows him. It’s quite possible that this could be the song that changes the game for Breezy and allows people to focus on his music, instead of his past indiscretions.

Listen to Chris Brown ‘Fine China’

Next: Watch the 'Fine China' Music Video

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