Xtravision in Ashbourne had a box of discounted CDs that I used to trawl through. We used to do laps of the town and it was a regular stop throughout my middle teenage years. When I was about 17, I bought Pharrell’s “In My Mind” album. I think it cost me €6 from the Xtravision bargain bin. It was in a blank case with no album booklet.
It was a pivotal album in my musical brain development. I think I knew that it wasn’t a perfect album. Pharrell’s lyrics were often lame or a bit jarring. It was so strange because it’s an incredible piece of production and he obviously understands what sounds cool at a scientific level, but it was very much a transition for him from the producer or featuring artist to being the leading man.
There’s a couple of songs that I love on the album but my favourite has always been “Angel”. I think it’s in part because it’s kind of a sing/rap crossover from Pharrell. The other thing I love is the level of nonsense in the lyrics.
“She got an ass like loaf of bread
Make you want a slice
But she’s the girl, you take her home to mother
But she dont want ya bread
Brother, ya betta think twice (twice)
See, you can see the heat I will be her butter”
I love the idea that he said that and it got past a full team of people. Madness.
It kinda makes sense that the album would have mad shit on it because Pharrell was just on top of the world as a producer. You can hear it in “Angel”. The beats are classic Neptunes beats. The falsetto singing from Pharrell and the harmonies are incredible. The piano verse is super punchy. I think when you can do all that you’re allowed write nonsense lyrics.
You can listen to “Angel” by Pharrell here.