Never in all my years of being a Brandy fan have I come across an offering from her that made me want to not only bleach my eyes, but also my memory banks, clean of the fuckery just witnessed.
This whole minute with ‘Put It Down’ and its bad-tasting Chris Brown accompaniment has been steadily trying my patience from the beginning. I mean, I tried to be gracious and optimistic about the song when I first heard it – but now that I have viewed the full package and digested the kind of direction B Rocka is stooping down to in order to claim some desperately-needed hit – I’m out.
Fucking dial 13 CABS, open up Tram Tracker, search for the next available flight – anything – just get me the hell out of this place.
Director Hype Williams – who has an uncanny ability to cheapen almost everything he touches – should not have been behind Brandy‘s video. This hook up is one of those classic cases of guffawing embarrassment when you see somebody step out in an unflattering outfit but can just tell that they think they’re hot shit just because it’s designer label.
The prolific director may have had a few memorable videos over the past two decades but unfortunately for Brandy, ‘Put It Down’ veers closer to Hype‘s caca-soaked flops like Jessica Mauboy‘s ‘Get ‘Em Girls’ and ‘Saturday Night’ clips.
The dizzying collision of primary colours in cheap graphics and paint splattered backdrops look amateur. Tired and abused conventions of “young money” hip hop videos – like the sports cars, blue lighting on streets, and ostentatious bling – do nothing but breed ennui in the brains of the viewer.
How did Brandy‘s all important declaration of relevance back fire with such dated elements?
In terms of her appearance, Brandy is probably more stunning than ever and you really relish the moments where you’re fed close ups of her with proper lighting.
The brilliant return to her signature braids highlight how ageless her fine self has remained after all these years. It’s a crying shame that so much of the video was focused on her silhouette and movement when it could’ve delivered reels of tireless Covergirl material.
Now let’s talk about the choreography, which actually happens to be Brandy‘s fiercest effort yet, whether you liked it or not. Y’know, we gotta award some serious snaps for her execution and dedication here.
However, even though the dancing looked technically on point, there’s still something rather unconvincing about this whole set up. Perhaps the idea of her being some seductive siren of dance harks too much to the awkward sensual movements of her ‘Afrodisiac’ video when she was clearly trying to be something she wasn’t?
At this point in Brandy‘s career, the respected R&B diva could go further by capitalising on her reputation as a legit soul/R&B artist and styling herself accordingly.
The classy editorial look she was rocking in her last video with Monica ‘It All Belongs To Me’ is precisely how it should be done – not dressing like Kelly Rowland circa Simply Deep and luring thugs like she was Nicole Scherzinger.
Team Brandy desperately needs to focus more on the wealth of natural qualities the singer already has and package it in a way that not only presents her a relevant R&B artist in 2012 – but one with integrity.
Watch ‘Put It Down’:
Brandy‘s ‘Put It Down’ is currently at its charting peak of #23 on the US Billboard R&B/Hip Hop Songs. Looks like it’s a grower in the American urban music market despite the much-criticised, long-drawn campaign.
Remember, this song was released digitally in early May, then went to rhythmic stations in June, and now two months after, we’re copping the music video. Shaking my damn head.