Album Review: No Good – Ivy Levan

Ivy Levan, an American pop recording artist, model and actress, is currently signed to Cherrytree Records, part of Interscope Records. Levan made her acting debut starring as Cynthia in the 2010 film Drop Dead Gorgeous. She moved to Los Angeles at age 16 to pursue a music career, signed with manager Tommy Mattola, and began an album for Virgin Records. However, Virgin and Capitol records merged and two years of work was shelved. Ivy was forced to live a normal life for the next 4 years as a waitress/bottle service girl in Hollywood. Levan released an EP album in 2013 under Interscope Records titled Introducing The Dame. The EP features the single Hot Damn, which has been increasingly popular on YouTube. She released the first single, titled Biscuit, from her first studio album, on January 13, 2015. The single’s music video was released on the same day. Her debut album, No Good, was released on August 7, 2015.

Ivy Levan
Ivy Levan.

The first song on the album, The Dame Says, has a little bit of an edgy feel to it. It starts of with some instrumental stuff, leading right into Levan singing, “I said trick or treat/They said that I got to keep it sweet/But I’mma do my thang/You got a problem, you can kiss this ring/Now you act like you got some class/But do you know how to back that a** up/Watch me drop the hurt/Make money money, make money money work/(Make money money, make money money work/(Make money work).” This is a very bold song, with the daring lyrics and stunning vocals. Biscuit, her next song, was previously released as a single. Unlike her previous songs, it’s a danceable R&B-pop track throwing back to the mid 2000’s, as opposed to being inspired by 20th century jazz. In this track, Ivy threatens a particularly pestering pursuer with violence. In the lyrics, “Hold up, hold up, hold up/Lemme make one thing clear/If you wanna keep on runnin’ ya mouth/Wastin’ my time/Ah ha, then here’s watcha gotta do,” These lyrics mean that Ivy is informing an individual the precautions to take if they decide to continue to waste her time. She won’t take another minute listening to this person. She’s completely in charge! In the beginning of the song, Ivy starts off with a speaking intro, leading into the lyrics and the instrumental. In the next song on the album, No Good, Ivy sings, “I’m gonna give it like uh/’til you’re blue in the face/And not gonna stop ’til they put me away/I’m like, d**n, how bad can I be?/Cause I’m gonna be guilty to the fifth degree/I’m no good (no good, no good, no good)/Ain’t got nothing on this, no good/I’m no good (no good, no good, no good)/Ain’t got nothing on this, no good.” This song starts off a little slower than the others, but is still equally as edgy.

No Good album cover
No Good album cover.

Overall, the album is edgy and mature at the same time, which is difficult to achieve. It’s great to listen to, and feels like something that most artists strive to achieve.

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