Frank Ocean, though a bona fide member of Odd Future, separated himself from the pack only to find himself sitting pretty as a breakout R&B artist of 2011. While his music is equally incisive as that of Odd Future’s, it’s for completely different reasons; Ocean’s songwriting is both complex and subtle, bathed in arching metaphors and personal experience. Further, his own album nostalgia, ULTRA, released in February, featured remixes of the Animals’ “House of the Rising Sun” and MGMT’s “Electric Feel,” atypical fare for an R&B release. Now, Jay-Z, Kanye West and Nas want a piece, tapping Ocean for their upcoming albums. In an interview with Respect Magazine, OF’s Tyler, the Creator admitted that Ocean inspired him to “want to make a million by 23, shit like that.”
Which brings us to today. Ocean just released a new single, “Anywhere,” a potential addition to the repackaged release of nostalgia, ULTRA, that’s, if nothing more, proof he can stack millions via radio-friendly singles. (See: “Novacaine,” currently in rotation.) Under Ocean’s roughly filtered voice, “Anywhere” opens with an easy synth that could soundtrack a level in Super Mario, bolstered by a gooey, bouncy bass. Ocean’s vocal melodies are usually hard to pin down or predict, but here, Ocean’s more Trey Songz than Jesse Boykins III. It’s befitting, given Ocean’s ditched the musing poetry of nostalgia, ULTRA in favor of, well, sex. “Anywhere” isn’t deep enough to dive into, but it’s certainly worth a dip. [Stream "Anywhere" at Pretty Much Amazing.]
Def Jam will release the nostalgia, ULTRA tracks as an EP on July 26.