Music » CD Reviews

CD Review: Beyoncé

4 (Columbia)


As Beyoncé gets older, bigger, and more confident as a singer, she's braver about revealing her ambitions. With Destiny's Child she played the sassy ingenue willing, to a point, to be manipulated by the pop machine. As she became the voice of united womanhood on her solo albums, she stepped up her game. On her fourth, she sets her eyes on the stage with huge, chorus-driven songs ready for audiences of all ages, races, and backgrounds. And she kicks it all off with "1+1," a monster ballad that could be the showstopping highlight of a hit Broadway musical about a woman who's finally found peace of mind with the love of her life. 4 plays like that throughout — the ups ("Party"), downs ("Best Thing I Never Had"), and eventual triumph of a queen ("Run the World [Girls]"). Beyoncé takes few risks here, but royalty rarely does. — Gallucci

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.