Ushering in rather lame lyrics
While Usher was Looking 4 [Him]self, the rest of us should've been looking for the attention span to sit through to an hour of the man whining about love. And there are some pretty awful lyrics, starting with lead single, Climax: 'I gave my best, it wasn't enough ... You say it's better if we love each other separately'. PUH-lease.
Usher, you have everything going for you: your falsetto is practically flawless and the tracks are so well-produced. But the lyrics ... oh my! A little subtlety would go a long way. It's obvious that the song will be about heartbreak, you don't need to spell it out for us.
After the first three tracks, you realise there is a formula - a little exploration of vocal range, some synths, and a sprinkle of validation: 'platinum on the wall, seven Grammys ... many women'.
But Usher fails to make the best use of his resources. - He has Diplo producing - Diplo! - yet Looking 4 Myself feels like a purely personal project, not one ready for mass consumption - there's too little variety.
Second single Scream probably best encapsulates the album: despite the cringe-worthy lyrics, its pulsing beats and repetitive phrases are a sign this will be played all summer.