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Review: B.o.B’s latest album puts listeners on cloud nine

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B.o.B’s “Strange Clouds” takes the rapper to new heights with a more developed sound.

Similar to his previous album, “The Adventures of Bobby Ray,” B.o.B features artists on the majority of his tracks. This time around, he shares his spotlight with those such as Taylor Swift, Ryan Tedder and even Morgan Freeman.

Though his previous album has much more of a pop-ish feel, “Strange Clouds” takes on more of a hip-hop sound. The beats are stronger and the bass is louder, showcasing B.o.B’s rapping abilities but leaving no room for a couple of the more upbeat tracks that were present on “The Adventures of Bobby Ray.”

Overall, the sound of the new album is much more consistent, with a definite flow from track to track rather than being all over the place like his last CD was. At times, the songs can seem a bit too similar, but there is some variety throughout the album to break the monotony.

His sound is more developed and, as a result, much better. All the kinks from his previous tracks have been worked out, just as they should be in a second studio album.

Although there isn’t a dance track similar to that of “Magic,” which peaked at No. 10 on the Billboard Top 100 chart, listeners might be inspired to dance in some capacity to the tracks that B.o.B presents this time around, such as “So Good” and “Arena,” the latter featuring Chris Brown and T.I.

“Out of My Mind,” featuring Nicki Minaj, quotes the hit “Airplanes,” but bears no similarity to the track. Nor does any other song on the album, unfortunately for those who were hoping for such.

“Castles,” featuring Trey Songz, is reminiscent of “Nothin’ On You,” and proves to be a strong track on the album. It wouldn’t be surprising if this track were released as a single in the future.

B.o.B’s second album will likely be a best-seller in the weeks to come, with its infectious beats and new sound that pulls listeners in and keeps them on cloud nine.

Grade: B

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