BEYONCÉ: the discography rate ~ WINNER revealed! | Page 15 | The Popjustice Forum

BEYONCÉ: the discography rate ~ WINNER revealed!

Discussion in 'Charts, rates etc' started by allyshone, Apr 25, 2022.

  1. No more calls for Video Phone! That one is a stone cold bop. Perfect little slice of late '00s style R&B, a little time capsule.
  2. Die With You - 6.75
    ~ I literally forgot this was still in. Despite being nice and having lovely vocals (duh), I honestly find this song boring. It is worth noting that my score was considerably bumped by that moment around 2:30 when she switches up the key for the first few lines of the final chorus which is stunning. Shame the rest of the song isn't nearly as good.

    Nothing out There for Me - 6
    ~ The only thing I recall about this one is the few seconds of that little sung intro. The rest is just forgettable and quite underwhelming given the collab. I agree that the production has some Aaliyah elements to it, though the result is rather uninteresting and the structure is messy at times. It's an okay song and it's good to see the best (even though that one isn't too great either) Missy Elliott collab remain as the last one here.

    World Wide Woman - 7
    ~ Seems like we collectively agreed that, while the lyrics for this one were dated on arrival, it still bops. The lyrics actually sound straight from some Eurodance or bubblegum pop song from late 90s/early 00s, so from that point of view it's actually charming by how much they were late with the internet trend. The production, however, is very mid-00s and slots nicely with the rest of the album sound. The hook is memorable and while the rest doesn't reach any significant heights, this is a fun tune. On retrospect, I could've scored this one a bit higher, and it's not the weakest remaining track from "B'Day" either.
    And, yes, I had to use dial-up internet access until about 2008 or 2009, so I can relate to this type of tardiness.
    soratami likes this.
  3. Some more extras and a bonus track...

    SCORE: 6.4375
    TOTAL POINTS: 128.75

    HIGHEST SCORE: 9.5 x 1 ( @Phonetics Girl )
    LOWEST SCORE: 4 x 2 ( @allyshone, @Sprockrooster )
    MY SCORE: 4/10​

    You know, maybe if I'd actually seen Cadillac Records, I would appreciate this more and 4 is definitely too low of a score in hindsight... however we need some of these extras to get moving cause I'm not going to be happy when some album tracks start dipping. Am I a bad Hive member if I haven't seen, arguably, Beyoncé's most critically acclaimed role as Etta James? Maybe.

    Once In a Lifetime is an original song taken from the Cadillac Records soundtrack and was nominated for both a Grammy and a Golden Globe, although it ultimately lost on both occasions. The track was written with Amanda Ghost and Ian Dench, who worked on a handful of tracks for Beyoncé's third studio album, I Am... Sasha Fierce. Other credits go to Scott McFarnon and The Rural (James Dring, Jody Street).

    The song does a decent job of modernising a more traditional sound. Bey's vocal performance is still at a 10, but it's rarely not. Overall though, it gives me wedding song vibes, which, as we know by now, isn't my vibe. Interestingly, the Etta James covers from the soundtrack have made it further than this... but for how long.


    SCORE: 6.45

    HIGHEST SCORE: 9 x 2 ( @Phonetics Girl, @TéléDex )
    LOWEST SCORE: 1 x 1 ( @Daniel_O )
    MY SCORE: 6.5/10

    And another Missy Elliott collaboration gets cut. This time, it's Crazy Feelings, taken from Missy's second studio album, Da Real World. Written by Missy and Timbaland, the song details how you can be so in love, you miss all the red flags. The more I listen to this track, the more I like it. It's not in your face, it's not a certified banger and it still doesn't reach the potential a collab between these two should reach, however it's a really cool R&B track that has consistently grown on me over the time of this rate. Honestly, I think this could have been a decent hit for the two of them, had it been a single and got a nice video.

    I'm cool with it exiting now though. This cut sees the last remaining Beyoncé/Missy collaboration, Fighting Temptation, left to fend for itself.


    SCORE: 6.46
    TOTAL POINTS: 193.75

    HIGHEST SCORE: 9 x 1 ( @Music Is Death )
    LOWEST SCORE: 2.5 x 1 ( @Robert )
    MY SCORE: 6.5/10

    Why are the bonus tracks to Dangerously In Love better than some of the dross we got on the standard edition Dangerously In Love? Co-written with Mario Winans (of I Don’t Wanna Know fame) and Michael Jones, I Can’t Take No More was a bonus song that you could get when fans pre-ordered Dangerously In Love from the Sony Music Store. It was also included on Beyoncé’s Speak My Mind mysterious mixtape that was released in 2005 and then it magically seemed to become available on Apple Music and iTunes in the US in 2017. Unfortunately for the rest of us, we have to settle with alternative methods to listen to it.

    The lyrics can be interpreted a few different ways, however the main theory behind I Can’t Take No More is it is Beyoncé’s response to a lot of hate and criticism she received (notably on Mathew Knowles behalf) during the shapeshifting members of Destiny’s Child saga. She laments about all the things that have been said about her, “when you really don’t know me yet”. And she was right, we really didn’t know who Beyoncé was back in the early 00s. As she continues, she sings “why don’t you live your life and let me live mine”, which is a narrative that Beyoncé has pretty much kept up with to the present day.

    I understand why the song doesn’t necessarily fit with the other tracks on the album story-wise, however that still doesn’t negate the fact that this is leaps ahead of the likes of Gift From Virgo, Daddy and That’s How You Like It.​


    SCORE: 6.482
    TOTAL POINTS: 129.65

    HIGHEST SCORE: 9 x 2 ( @odyism, @sesita )
    LOWEST SCORE: 4 x 1 ( @Robert )
    MY SCORE: 5.5/10

    Another Cadillac Records track gets cut. By this point, we already know I haven't seen the movie. Maybe it's because the film sits at 66% on Rotten Tomatoes. I only seem to watch movies over 70% or below 30% these days. 66% gives me boring vibes, but I would like to know if any of you have seen Cadillac Records and think it's worth the watch.

    Anyway, All I Could Do Was Cry is, of course, a cover of the 1960 song by Etta James, who Beyoncé plays in the movie. The cover is all about the VOCALS and it's interesting to hear Beyoncé imitate Etta, but she also manages to make it her own.

    Hopefully the late, great James was honoured by this version of the song. The relationship between the two singers wasn't always smooth sailing, in the media at least, which we'll get to later on in the rate, however Beyoncé wished James a "Happy Heavenly Birthday" earlier this year and when she sadly passed in 2012, Beyoncé went on record to say, "When she effortlessly opened her mouth, you could hear her pain and triumph. Her deeply emotional way of delivering a song told her story with no filter. She was fearless, and she had guts. She will be missed."

    Last edited: Sep 23, 2022
  4. Shining - 5
    ~ I don't hate this one but it seems to have some annoying bits (notably that Jay Z verse) and doesn't really appeal to me as a whole. The sample is very nicely used though there's nothing about it that makes me want to return to this..

    Top Off (live) - 3
    ~ Finally... my lowest score of the entire rate is gone. A bit wild to think this outlasted 40 songs, and that I'm the lowest scorer for once. I just don't get anything about this. It's 30 seconds of DJ Khaled yelling followed by 50 seconds of Beyoncé... producing sounds? I like the trumpets in the instrumental but this is the highest I could've rated it, since it's completely useless to me. Listening to the studio version (probably for the second time ever), it sucks and Bey actually has the best part in the song - I would've probably scored it even lower and kinda wish it was included in that form so it would've gotten eliminated much earlier.
    "Bottom 2 of my scores and it ain't number 2" huehuehue
  5. The Cadillac Records songs were a pleasant surprise to me, especially "Once In A Lifetime." Everything about that project passed me by at the time.
  6. Cadillac Records is fine. It's a well-made movie with good performances but it's not terribly exciting or nearly as captivating as the musicians it depicts. Beyoncé is very convincing as Etta James, you could say she understood the assignment, and her cover of "I'd Rather Go Blind" is a beautiful moment. If you like biopics and the Motown era, I'd recommend it to you. Otherwise, you're honestly not missing much.
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2022
    sesita and allyshone like this.
  7. I'm usually a pretty generous scorer, but the highest scores I've lost so far were just two 8s - Dreaming and Back to Black.
    Maki and allyshone like this.
  8. I knew we rated a lot of songs but having them be eliminated at this pace and to still have 141 songs left. What a discography.
    Robert, Maki, godspeed and 3 others like this.
  9. Good thing I have 2 weeks off at the end of July before I start my new job! The pace can continue.

  10. Good for you. The only time I can recall where the rate was very pleasing during its early results is when I didn't lose a score above 7 throughout the first twenty eliminations of Anastacia's discography rate.

    Oop I totally forgot abut this one. It can leave anytime.
  11. Time for the extras section to take a little break...

    SCORE: 6.493
    TOTAL POINTS: 194.8

    81/113 (-61) | 6.098 (+0.395)
    HIGHEST SCORE: 10 x 2 ( @sesita, @Remorque )
    LOWEST SCORE: 0 x 1 ( @Ana Raquel )
    MY SCORE: 6.5/10

    The first cut from Lemonade is, unsurprisingly, Forward (with James Blake). The reason why it's unsurprising... well it's essentially an interlude and only features a few lines of backing vocals from Beyoncé... who we are all here for! Can't deny the talents of James Blake though, and this little interlude represents a key turning point on the Lemonade album, as we move towards the final three massive songs, Beyoncé (through Blake) realises it's time to listen and fight for her marriage. It's a gorgeous little interlude and absolutely deserves a spot on the album. Imagine Sandcastles straight into Freedom, the whiplash! Separate it from the context of the album and it doesn't work as much.

    Forward hits especially hard in the Lemonade film, as it features the mothers of Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner and Michael Brown. They each hold portraits of their sons, each unjustifiably murdered by people who were armed, whether police or neighbourhood security. The images are notably striking, not only because it reminds you of the individual atrocities themselves, but it's a stark contrast in imagery compared to how some of the American media likes to depict these young men. Here you see heartbroken mothers, looking "regal", holding still portraits of their sons, frozen in time, dreaming of the bright futures they could have had. It's fucking devastating. Speaking about the experience, Michael Brown's mother, Lezley McSpadden said, "She treated us well, made sure we were comfortable. I tried to hold it together but, any time I’m talking about my son or looking at a picture I just think that he’s gone. I appreciate her for being bold enough to confront things and be sensitive at the same time." Beyoncé brought the group with her to the 2016 VMAs, along with Oscar Grant's mother, who also appears in the Lemonade film.

    James Blake has performed the song numerous times on tour since 2016. You can view one of the first live performances of the song below.


    SCORE: 6.51
    TOTAL POINTS: 195.3

    HIGHEST SCORE: 10 x 2 ( @Maki, @Robert )
    LOWEST SCORE: 1 x 2 ( @Daniel_O )
    MY SCORE: 5/10​

    So we’ve come to learn, Beyoncé likes to dabble with the Spanish language every now and then and no era had more Spanish moments than B’Day. Irreemplazable was an EP that was released in August 2007, featuring Spanish/Spanglish versions of some of B’Day’s most popular songs including Irreplaceable, Listen and Beautiful Liar. The first track on the EP though was a new song, Amor Gitano, a duet with Mexican artist Alejandro Fernandez. The duet was mainly a record label endeavour rather than something organic between the pair and at the time, producers of a new telenovela El Zorro were also looking around for a theme song and Amor Gitano was chosen, premiering in February 2007. The song was written by Grammy award winners Reyli Barba and Jaime Flores, along with Beyoncé and producer Rudy Perez. The song title translated to English means Gypsy Love.

    Amor Gitano is considered a sensual flamenco-pop track and it is very much that. Both Bey’s and Alejandro’s voices blend really well together. I don't know why this keeps happening, but I feel like I underrated this as well initially. It's overall average is probably more accurate than my score. The ending is especially beautiful.

    Apparently, the song is the second best selling song of all time in Spain, the first being Despacito, which is crazy. I had no idea this was such a monster hit. The song has sold over half a million copies and is approaching 20 million streams on Spotify. There is a cute making of video, showing off Beyoncé’s skills in the recording studio and also her cracking up after a “terrible” take (spoiler: it's not terrible). The making of video also captures the first meeting of Beyoncé and Alejandro.

    Next up...
    two more previously Untouched by The Veronicas albums lose their first tracks, but can you guess which?

    Last edited: Sep 23, 2022
    nikkysan, GimmeWork, Ensnare and 20 others like this.
  12. [​IMG]

    C'mon... "Amor Gitano" is fantastic and we still have "Lost Yo Mind" and "Back Up" clogging the rate from the "B'Day" section, among heaps of other weaker songs.

    It made tiny bit of sense that the ballads I adore tanked, but now we got to criminally underrating proper bops too. I guess the bonus track status, foreign language and male vocals cursed this one...
  13. Shining left to soon!

    Foreward is the obvious first cut from Lemonade. I often just think of it as an outerlude to Sandcastles and not on it's own, but scoring and rating it independent of the music around it, it doesn't leave much of a mark.
    Ashling92 and allyshone like this.
  14. Well it was about time the self-titled and especially "EVERYTHING IS LOVE" lost something. I predict "Ring Off" and "NICE" will be first tracks out from these two albums.

    Edit: Oh wait, "The Gift" hasn't lost anything yet, either.
    allyshone likes this.
  15. Oh my. My first 10 has fallen with Amor Gitano. It deserved so much better. Great song and Beyoncé does a great job with the Spanish (to these non-native Spanish speaking ears). At least I wasn’t the only one with taste @Maki
    Sprockrooster, Maki and allyshone like this.
  16. Once in a Lifetime - 7.25
    ~ I... thought this is better than all of Etta James' covers, yet it leaves first from that soundtrack? Okay, not like I'm not used to having unpopular opinions. This must be one of her most tucked away songs, since it wasn't originally included on the song list. The chorus is very charming, and I love the way she sings the title of the track but the rest is nothing special. Maybe the Christmassy elements here didn't appeal to everyone. Still, it's very pleasant. Not bothered it left now, though I'm hoping to see the covers from this album leave soon.
    Also, I think this one should've appeared among the regular extras instead of optional section, since it's an original solo Bey song. Don't think it would've done much differently in the rate, so it doesn't really matter.

    Crazy Feelings - 7
    ~ This is notable for being the very first time Beyoncé appeared on a song credited as a solo artist (June 1999). Otherwise, the song itself isn't too notable at all. I like the darkness of the instrumental, there's a cool vibe and it all flows nicely, but it's still missing something. It surely is enjoyable while I'm listening to it, but I don't seek the song on its own. I can easily imagine Aaliyah here, perhaps doing a slightly better job.

    And now that I mentioned her, there's a song on the same album actually featuring Aaliyah - it's pretty good but nothing too special either:

    I Can’t Take No More - 6
    ~ I really thought we'd see this one leave back when we were saying goodbye to songs like "My Man" and "Sexuality", since it's definitely giving me similar vibes in terms of production/quality. There really isn't anything I dislike here, but it's just... there. Decent filler track that, lyrics aside, doesn't bring anything new to the album and drags a bit. I do remember the pre-chorus and chorus here from the top of my head, which is a plus. The outro is cute, too.
    This song wasn't included in the previous rate and it kinda implies it's not memorable.

    All I Could Do Was Cry - 6.5
    ~ These covers were tricky to rate since I don't find any use in them. Great vocals, beautiful vocals and that's about it. Maybe I should've downgraded the score here.
    allyshone, Robert and soratami like this.
  17. Yay for my other zero leaving! I don't really see the point of it and I LOATHE James Blake's voice to the point it gives me a headache.

    Amor Gitano was robbed though!!! She was giving us a princesa latina moment (as the reina latina moment is obviously beautiful liar) and I was living for it.
    allyshone, Robert and Maki like this.
  18. RainOnFire

    RainOnFire Staff Member

    I'm sorry I didn't vote @allyshone but I'm really enjoying following along! The write-ups have been excellent. I had no idea about the Speak My Mind mixtape, or that My First Time/Honesty already existed before their placements as bonus tracks - I love little facts like those!
  19. Two more album cuts get the chop...

    SCORE: 6.513
    TOTAL POINTS: 195.4

    HIGHEST SCORE: 9.5 x 1 ( @boombazookajoe )
    LOWEST SCORE: 1 x 1 ( @Daniel_O )
    MY SCORE: 8/10

    NICE is the first cut to fall from Beyoncé and Jay-Z's joint album, Everything Is Love. NICE features longtime friend and collaborator Pharrell Williams, who is a co-writer on the track along with songwriting duo Denisia Andrews and Brittany Coney aka Nova Wav. Bey and Jay do some humble bragging throughout the song, however it's Bey who snatches up all the attention, especially with lines like, "if I gave two fucks, two fucks 'bout streaming numbers, would have put Lemonade on Spotify" and "I'm better than the hype, I give you life".

    I really enjoy Beyoncé's parts here. The production and instrumental may be a tad uninspired, but I just have a soft spot for most, if not all of Everything Is Love. It really documented that summer of 2018 for me, which is probably why I like it so much. Anyway, back to NICE... yes Beyoncé carries this. I also love listening to Bey do her best Pharrell impression, before he jumps in towards the end to finish his verse.

    For a mid-tempo track where the production doesn't really change throughout, the song is actually really fun to watch performed live. After the release of Everything Is Love, NICE was eventually added to the setlist for the On The Run II Tour, and Beyoncé just really ends up having fun with it. Catch a funny moment in the performance below where the lights go out at .25s (SOMEBODY GETTIN' FIRED!). Finally, Pharrell joined the couple for a performance of the song at their headlining Global Citizen Festival show in South Africa and Pharrell forgets most of the lyrics, much to Beyoncé's annoyance I'm sure.


    SCORE: 6.516
    TOTAL POINTS: 195.5

    HIGHEST SCORE: 10 x 3 ( @Sprockrooster, @odyism, @Music Is Death )
    LOWEST SCORE: 1 x 1 ( @klow )
    MY SCORE: 6.5/10​

    Not even three 10s could save this from the barrage of average scores it received across the board. It's quite unusual for a lead single to leave first from an album, but here we are. It's happened. SPIRIT was released in July 2019, a week or so before The Lion King's release and is included on both the official soundtrack and Beyoncé's companion album, The Gift. The song was written and produced with big pop producer ILYA and the now very cool Labrinth. Despite me thinking the song was going to play within a scene in the live action remake of The Lion King, it was relegated to a credits song, like most of these soundtrack singles.

    SPIRIT is definitely the most conventional sounding song from The Gift, which is where it draws a lot of criticism, despite most music critics praising the song upon release. It's not bad by any means, but it certainly lacks any kind of edge to properly drive it home into my consciousness. It feels like the most obvious, by the numbers soundtrack song they could have created and as it turned out, The Gift had so much more to offer. I'm not mad about this being the first to be cut from the album.

    The visuals were stunning, as expected, though. Shot at the Grand Canyon, the music video almost makes me forget about the average-ness of song itself. It sees Beyoncé in multiple colourful outfits and gorgeous settings giving choreo, serving face and looking like a queen. The video also features clips from the film, which... lets just get it over with now... was not any good. The original film was my childhood favourite, so I was beyond excited for the live action remake, especially as Beyoncé was voicing Nala. But, in the end, it left me cold.

    SPIRIT has over 70m views on YouTube and over 95 million streams on Spotify, coming in behind BROWN SKIN GIRL and ALREADY. On the release of Beyoncé's BLACK IS KING, the companion visual album to The Gift, an updated version of Spirit was shown with an acoustic intro and choir. Now THIS version gave me chills on my first watch. You can view this below.

    Last edited: Sep 23, 2022
    nikkysan, GimmeWork, Ensnare and 19 others like this.
  20. NICE got a 6.5 average? Oh this better not be a sign of what's to come (meaning the anti rap girls low scoring the majority of EVERYTHING IS LOVE).
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