Mattress Music

Mattress Music

While a lot of modern R&B albums promise bedroom thrills and quickly detour into other subjects, Marques Houston’s fifth solo album Mattress Music fully lives up to its title. Houston stays on topic for all 12 songs, which is something of an accomplishment considering how quickly one can run out of ways to talk about boudoir activity. There is a nice variety here, from unabashedly explicit sex songs (“Mess”) to romantic gentility (“Waterfall”) to sweet, easygoing collaborations with rappers (“Pullin On Her Hair,” “Swag Sex”). The thing that ties the album together isn’t subject matter, but Houston’s approach to it. Mattress Music has a very specific tone to it, steamy but very gentle and breezy. Unlike some R&B lotharios, the singer never goes overboard, making this an effortless, steady listen from front to back — a rarity in the world of R&B bedroom albums. Though the raunchy subject matter may turn away some listeners, this is actually a very clever, meticulously crafted album that has been specially designed for maximum enjoyment. If you put it in and let it play at the right time, you are sure to have no complaints.

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