By Kay McCray | October 2, 2023
Victoria Monét is an R&B artist that gained fame from her songwriting skills. She was mostly known for writing hits like Ariana Grande’s “7 rings” and “thank u, next.” In 2020, this hidden gem dropped Jaguar, her first studio album. This album was able to help her start gaining recognition as a singer herself.
Three years later, Monét blessed her fans with Jaguar II. Let me be the one to tell you, she did not disappoint – this album had absolutely zero skips. From heartfelt songs, to confidence boosters, to songs that just make you chuckle, Monét showed her range and just overall talent when it comes to music.
Starting her album off strong, we get “Smoke,” which was split into two different songs. The first one features Lucky Daye, with whom her vocals perfectly mesh with. The way they both effortlessly glide on the smooth R&B beat is beautiful, making this easygoing track perfect for when you’re just chilling and want some background music. The second song “Smoke (Reprise)” being a continuation of the first, this one is sultry and intimate. My only critique is that I wish it was longer, as she sounded absolutely heavenly.
Jaguar II also features “On My Mama,” which was a hit on TikTok. This song is filled with affirmations like “I look fly, I look good.” Monét’s ability to make songs that boost your confidence is admirable. Apart from “On My Mama,” Jaguar II includes songs like “Alright” and “Cadillac (A Pimp’s Anthem)” that are sure to turn your everyday walk to class into a walk on a runway at NYFW. Not only are these songs ones that instill confidence, they’re also songs that you can’t help but dance to. While listening to them, with the addition of “Party Girls,” I couldn’t stop my body from vibing out to the lively beats of the songs.
Monét doesn’t shy away from her heartfelt and romantic side with songs like “How Does It Make You Feel,” “I’m the One,” and “Good Bye.” Starting off with “How Does It Make You Feel,” Monét talks about feeling like you and your person were brought together by God. On “I’m the One” we hear Monét pleading with her partner, trying to make them understand that she’s the one they’re meant to be with. She closes out the album with “Good Bye,” a song about finally having to let go of the person you love even though you don’t want to. Monét does a great job at showing the stages of a relationship you wanted to last coming to an end, which can be extremely relatable.
For those that don’t know, Victoria Monét is also a mother to her two-year-old daughter, Hazel. To my surprise, Hazel got her musical debut on the song “Hollywood,” which also featured Earth, Wind, & Fire. Nothing short of a hit, this song made me feel nostalgic and is definitely a song I’d listen to while taking a walk on a sunny day. This song just makes me feel warm on the inside.
Overall, the album was filled with hits and showed Monét’s three-year growth. With features from differing artists like Lucky Daye, Buju Banton, and Earth, Wind, & Fire, none of them sounded awkward. Everyone sounded like they were meant to be there, which is hard to do when the artists have such different sounds. Her ability to harmonize with reggae artist Buju Banton just shows her range and skill as an artist. This album has a song for everyone, and something to add to at least one (if not all) of their playlists!