The team behind the Think Like a Man soundtrack decided to do something different with the music for the romantic comedy’s second installment. Execs ditched the “various artists” formula – though last time it yielded a Grammy-nominated hit with John Legend’s Tonight (Best You Ever Had) – and instead put all their faith in a singular artist: Mary J. Blige.
The Queen of Hip-Hop Soul easily proves herself more than capable of exercising a vocal and emotional range to capture all the ups, downs and misfires one might expect from a movie inspired by Steve Harvey’s best-selling relationship guide book. Harvey would certainly approve Blige’s message on the anthemic Power Back. “The more you do that BS, the more I keep it real,” she sings of dealing with a wishy-washy lover. “If it’s one thing men respect, it’s when we don’t react.”
Self-assured Blige is serious about commitment, and she says as much on the ominous, head nod-inducing All Fun and Games, produced by The-Dream. But for all Blige’s tough talking, she has a soft side, too.
She finds chemistry in the club on the delicious horn and drum-laced See That Boy Again, produced by Pharrell. On the growling I Want You, she’s all torn up inside when she spots her ex-guy with a new woman. And she’s aching to be loved like I’m you, like I’m you, babe, on Self Love, a beautifully grand track, which is easily the soundtrack’s most riveting offering.
As a whole, the Think Like a Man Too compilation reveals that while women and men might be closer to figuring each other out, we can never outsmart love.