The self-titled playboy, Trey Songz, finally released his latest project, Tremaine The Album, Friday (March 24). Trey was creative in his promotion of Tremaine… by misleading us into thinking he was launching his own reality show, Tremaine The Playboy, with VH1.
The minisode music videos were five in total and all featured on the site, here. Trey definitely turned heads and possibly even got the attention of those who were into reality television but may have never been checking for his music prior. Nothing wrong with utilising shock value as a marketing strategy.
In the videos for the singles I previously reviewed; “Nobody Else But You”, “Playboy” and “Song Goes Off”, Trey has been surrounded by beautiful women attending to his every desire whilst he attempts to maintain his relationship with the woman he loves.
According to Trey, the songs and videos are reflective of his struggle to settle down in real life. Trey mentioned in his interview with The Breakfast Club that “the songs talk about how hard it is to be in love with one woman in the music industry and be myself”.
Hence this fifteen track project, although sensual and sexual from the visuals to the lyrics, Trey is sharing his dilemma: wanting to please his family and settle down but also not wanting to feel like he has rushed into a commitment he is not ready for. The songs do speak for themselves so let’s get into a few.
The album starts off very slow and sensual. Utilising his raspy and sultry vocals, Tremaine is asking his love interest to “Come Over” on track two. Trey’s vocals are riding on a synth piano with female vocals accompanying him in saying, “I want you to come over”. We even get some beatboxing towards the end of the track.
Trey is pleading very convincingly without saying much at all, which makes this song perfect for a lover’s day playlist if you’re into that or if you’re someone who appreciates the early 2000s RNB slow jams (like me).
As the album progresses Trey continues to give us that soulful sound we are used to from him in “Playboy” which is track five on the album. He is questioning himself as to why he’s still “stumbling out of these clubs/Still I’m so hard to trust/Don’t know why I’m still a playboy”.
On this simple beat, Trey sings to us as if in deep conversation, about not being able to differentiate between the woman he wants and the woman he needs. His mother is already asking about when she’s getting grandchildren from him but he swears the game won’t let him out. Meaning, he does not feel that he can give up his bachelor lifestyle anytime soon.
Only five songs in and I was sold but was also in for a surprise. The album takes a different route, just as I was getting comfortable with the RNB sound.
I was not sure this was going to work but once I heard it, it made sense. “What Are We Here For?” is a nice upbeat song that resonates with a lot of chart hitters we have become accustomed to hearing of late.
But if we get past the electric and head bopping beat Trey is still giving us his RNB vocals and asking the potential love of his life, “Do you want to go/Do you want to stay/I see you contemplating”. The sound is quite different for Trey but has the potential to be a hit especially if accompanied by an equally exciting video.
So far it seems that his songs are quite simple lyrically. He is not saying much at all and quite repetitive which I understand is the key to a hit but makes me wonder a little more. (Here I go). Could Trey really be transposing his fear of taking a chance on love, to his current situation as an RNB sex symbol? Who knows, let’s just keep enjoying the album.
Nearing the end and we are at “Picture Perfect” where Trey is taking us back to the man we know him to be. Just as I was starting to feel bad for the guy – never mind. He is asking the girl he’s thirsty for whether the guy she is currently dealing with is really picture perfect. This dark beat is perfect for the story being relayed as the guy Trey is talking about does not seem like a pleasant guy at all. Bit typical of #MrStealYourGirl to want someone who isn’t his.
“…’cos underneath the surface/I can tell you’re really hurting/Is it really picture perfect?” is how Trey is attempting to cast doubt in his love interest’s mind and convince her, with him is where she should be. As the song goes, he gets a little more passionate about his cause and vocally becomes more aggressive, hitting those riffs flawlessly.
“I can’t believe everything that I see” says Trey in the previous track and I am sat here thinking: neither can we, Trey. The bachelor life is looking more and more like a way of avoiding commitment, responsibility and the pain that comes with being in love. With everything he has one would hope that he could find a Mrs Neverson and share his success with his own family.
Nonetheless for all we know he could have a secret family and is maintaining the playboy façade for his brand and image. You can never know and is it really our business? Not at all. What I will say is the album was a job well done in my opinion.
We got the classic Trey Songz with a slight zing on his electric, pop and upbeat tracks, too. I would not say it’s his best work but nonetheless, from his marketing strategies to the production of the album, it was seamless. I’m kind of ready for another mixtape from him, how about you guys? Trey Songz’ Tremaine The Album can be heard on iTunes here.
Words by Ada Boas