It has become a forced issue to have a requisite anthem that caters to ladies, just to be considered as a diverse enterprise. Carefree Californians, TiRon and his ever-reliable consort, Ayomari, are doing the game one better with A Sucker For Pumps, a crisp, melodious glance through a relationship looking glass that was made for women, but strong enough to keep men in tune. Not only do they establish themselves to be unique in their thinking, they piece together an incredible album in the process.
Comparatively speaking, A Sucker for Pumps falls in line with releases such as 808s & Heartbreak and The Love Below with all the honesty of relationship exploits and none of the sap. The pair find no qualms in promoting chivalry on “Her Theme Song” and “Perfect,” just like there’s no fault in waking up “The Neighbors” thanks to the conformity of the missionary position. Avoiding the usual dimensions of “he say, she say,” TiRon & Ayomari exfoliate the surface area and go deep as heard on “No Wonder,” a cut dedicated to self-blame of the male ego, where TiRon admits to “going back to the same ‘ol a-hole role” after surviving a pregnancy scare.
Even with their chemistry fusing tighter than a vessel that leads to the heart’s innermost desires, it’s the unknown–yet highly gifted–production ensemble that really highlight the duo’s songwriting abilities. If the lyrics of “Jack Kerouac” are meant to personify the titular writer’s subconscious, then the string arrangements and deep bass grooves, created by DJ’s Dahi and Drewbyrd, act as his soul wilting away from love turmoil. The bouncy “All My Love” is a b-boy/girl record that sounds like it was vaulted away from 1988 while retaining all its freshness whereas Chordz 3D and Ty$’s “If I Had You” is a sonic kaleidoscope through a labyrinth of jazz dope enough to propel A Tribe Called Quest reunion. Well, maybe not a full blown reconciliation but there’s enough magic to warrant a few text messages. Although, it’s the album’s closer, “Fin” that conveys the music/message relationship the best as the somber undertones set the scenery for a vacated apartment where beautiful memories were once shared.
If any variable on A Sucker For Pumps could be considered the weakest link, it’s the fact that TiRon & Ayomari don’t hone in enough on making their words more poetic, settling for more subtle pricks of lyricism opposed to engrossing the premise with their intellect in robost doses. See the atmospheric “Lot on Your Mind,” which wins more so from the sum of its parts game. A Sucker For Pumps puts a timeout on the everlasting battle of the sexes and makes them both equal opportunists and scapegoats. Such is life.
Label: The Cafeteria Line | Producers: Exile, Oddisee, TiRon, Ty$, Chordz 3D, D.K., DJ Dahl, Iman Omari, Tiffany Gouche, DJ Drewbyrd, Andrew Lloyd, beatnich, J.LBS