Album Review: Robin Thicke: “Sex Therapy: The Session”

Be my million dollar baby by the end of the trip be my billion dollar lady…

I always thought it was so adorable that Robin Thicke won Paula Patton over by serenading her with Jodeci songs when they were younger. But if I even think about him singing “Forever My Lady” this review will never get finished.

Robin Thicke’s latest album Sex Therapy: The Session is a throwback to the sensuous soul of Marvin Gaye, and Prince’s overtly sexual electronic funk.

The album begins like a late night infomercial: Are you need in need of some loving this holiday season? Robin Thicke wants to be your love doctor. Yeah, baby. He wants you to know that he has a healthy strong libido to wipe your blues away. The red light from the album cover hints as to what he might have in mind.

The first half of the album is Prince-esque sexy. On the playful “Meiple,” he keeps up with Jay’s word flow: “A lady don’t lift things, open doors, stand alone, not when she with me babe.” He professes that he’ll love you more than your boyfriend ever could on “Make U Love Me,” and irresistible track that’s hard not to bounce along to. “Rollacoasta” sounds like a Prince and the Revolution B-side, featuring Estelle as a New Age Sheila E. “It’s In The Morning” has that Dream flow and Snoop adds to the slow mellow groove. Great singers do amazing things with great beats.

The interludes sound like jazzy elevator music, as you wait for the doctor to answer your call. Although unnecessary and slightly distracting, it adds a lighthearted quality.

On “Elevatas,” he returns to his original sound, when he was simply known as Thicke. The track features Kid Cudi and the two fit in the pocket of the booming electronic beat. If there ever was a rapper designed for Robin Thicke’s music, it would be Kid Cudi. It’s the moment on the album when his own distinct sound emerges from his influences.

The album’s real magic kicks in during the second half. “Million Dollar Baby” shows that Robin Thicke is the closest thing to Marvin Gaye we have in this generation. He samples “Trouble Man” brilliantly, blending Marvin’s riffs with a brand new concept. He shines on the collection of truly exquisite love songs. “Jus Right” has a Latin Sergio Mendez feel that wraps around just like a warm bubble bath. He ties the love songs together with a similar sound, just like Marvin Gaye’s “I Want You” album.He pursues his love on “Mona Lisa,” and I can’t imagine anyone not falling for the lyrics. A couple of love songs in, and you forget the lustful first half of the album.

The album closes with “Diamonds” featuring Game, an ode to the beautiful women in their lives set to a soulful twostep.

Sex Therapy: The Session has something for every R&B listener. Luther, Stevie, and Marvin Gaye only need a couple notes of a love song to set hearts aflutter. Robin Thicke is on that level. No love doctor needed.

Lust fades but the beauty of a sweet love song lasts forever.

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