Album review: Songs in A Minor: 20th Anniversary Exclusives

Ash Anders, Volunteer DJ

“Songs in A Minor: 20th Anniversary Exclusives” is the self-explanatory release of four songs dedicated to Alicia Keys’ debut album, “Songs in A Minor” (2001), which sold more than 50,000 copies during its first day of availability. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and is certified diamond worldwide. In this EP, the Grammy-awarded singer reintroduces the hit track “Fallin’,” which led her climb to fame in 2001, as well as two new love songs – “Foolish Heart” and “Crazy (Mi Corazon).”

Fallin’ – The opening track of the EP is different from previously released versions, utilizing almost ethereal vocals and music toward the end of the track, leading to a much more personal listen.

I Won’t (Crazy World) – A catchy, fun, and upbeat song, setting the mood for the EP with a unique rhythm and use of background sounds that I haven’t heard in many other songs. 

Foolish Heart – This track shows off Keys’ strong vocal control. However despite the lyrics (specifically the lines Careful when you let your soul delight, Love has a price), her voice isn’t as emotional as other popular pop singers (such as Rihanna’s “Stay”), but the sophistication of the track’s production is able to overshadow this minor flaw.  

Crazy (Mi Corazon) – Keys’ emotion is much more apparent in this song, with haunting background vocals and a solid beat as the base of the song, pairing nicely with the unique rhythms of “I Won’t (Crazy World).”

Keys’ celebratory EP rehashes well-loved songs and also attempts at introducing unreleased tracks to which she falls a little short. Her pop songs, though iconic and catchy, aren’t quite compatible with today’s emotion-seeking listeners. In our age of musical enlightenment, this EP might not be for everyone. It would easily fit in with Spotify’s classic playlists, but it doesn’t have enough ‘wow’ factor to warrant a loyal listen on its own. 

Rating: 2 out of 5 sails