Bad Rabbits just dropped a near-perfect record.
Granted, that shouldn’t be surprising to many. The band’s debut album American Love hit #1 on the iTunes R&B Chart and landed at #10 on the Billboard Heatseeker Chart upon its release in 2013. With their new record Mimi, the genre-bending trio deliver enough synth lines and funk flair to get the party started and to keep it going late into the night.
Made with long-time friends and producers B. Lewis and Gavin Castleton, the album—Mimi—finds the group experimenting. Yet, despite going outside of their usual boundaries, Mimi feels effortless. The album is infused with a confidence made by artists not trying to be anything other than themselves. That confidence flows through the album in a way that is thoroughly contagious.
The opening track introduces us to the album’s titular character, Mimi. The band describes Mimi as a “short-haired, dark-skinned, social media-obsessed, voluptuous vixen … whose sexuality is ambiguous”. Each song revolves around her, giving us a portrait of this mysterious woman from the perspective of others.
With “Mimi”, Bad Rabbits set the feel-good tone that carries throughout the record. While the rhyming may be simple (“Mimi, you know it’s all about you, you”), the tune bends enough genres that fans of funk, pop and R&B can move to it.
The highlight of the record comes from track #2, “F on the J-O-B”. Fun and effortless on the surface, the song holds a message in tune with the #MeToo movement, echoing the type of real sexual harassment many women experience on the daily. Told from the perspective of your resident office pervert, we hear the narrator whine about an unrequited workplace crush. Except, by “workplace crush” we mean “gross, predatory fixation”. “It was just a thought, don’t tell the boss” quickly spirals into “don’t tell the cops” and soon enough we find our narrator in jail.
Yet despite the plotline, the song manages to be hilarious and vindicating. We get to see the perv actually face consequences for his actions all the while lamenting how “it’s always the Nice Guy catching the blame”, and it feels oh so good. SNL wishes it had written the song first (and it just may have if the Lonely Island guys were still on set). Even more satisfying is the fact that the authority figures in the track (the boss and the prison guards) are all women.
The rest of the album remains endlessly-playable. “Mysterious”, “Ain’t a Crime” and “Eyes on You” all give us a glance into Mimi’s life while still reminding us that we don’t know this girl at all, no matter how much we may want to.
Another highlight comes with “Dollars & Change”. The protagonist sings about “putting a smile on your face” and the track does just that, making you feel rich even if your bank account disagrees.
“After Party” closes the record, completing the party vibe (quite literally) present throughout Mimi.
Bad Rabbits experimented on this record and it paid off. We may leave not knowing much about Mimi, but we’re left wanting to hear about her again and again.
“F on the J-O-B”
“Dollars & Change”