God, Bruno Mars is really running away with this throwback thing in the pockets of his silky shorts. Not that I’m complaining.
theneedledrop’s Anthony Fantano brought up some interesting points in his review of the entire “24K Magic” album, but I personally think that the entire album is a feel-good trip to ’80s pop and R&B about love and sex, beautifully and timely translated for the millennial audience Mars is targeting.
There are three songs on this record that found a nice slot in my ear to call home. “24K Magic” is a loud announcement to everyone that the cuddly “Grenade” Mars is long dead and gone, fam. “Versace on the Floor” is the type of song that would be played on 2017 Filipino wedding videos (because people don’t listen to the lyrics, really). The final banger and the best track on the record, in my humble opinion, is “That’s What I Like”.
The first few seconds of this tune was a little tribute to R. Kelly’s “I’m A Flirt Remix”, a smexy opening salvo that immediately appeals to the part of you that was stuck in the 2000’s. Mars immediately burst into the song with his James Brown-inspired semi-singing.
The refrain was beautiful albeit a bit foreign for me; I’m still trying to adjust my mindset when it comes to Bruno Mars. The sappy bull he released during his earlier years is really hard to wash off. He then cranked the sex up to a thousand when the chorus dropped, he sounded so suave and full of confidence. My underwear is wet, and I’m loving it.
The bridge was a bit of a nod to the crooning R&B groups of the 80s and 90s with the way he was sounding romantic and assuring. He kept up the energy up until the end of the 3:26 run time without losing his unique vocal style in all of the hoopla.
The thing with Bruno, and Mr. Fontano explained this a lot better, is this: the musical history lesson he’s giving us works because the entire thing fits him like a glove. I don’t think there are a lot of people who can imitate his fashion sense; I don’t see a lot of people being able to copy his singing, either. The entire package is a harmonious blessing from the God to make up for that roller coaster of a year we just experienced.
I dunno how the hell Bruno Mars is going to top this record, but I’m more than excited to hear what’s up next.