After catching a lot of heat for their single “If I Get Caught,” musical duo dvsn, consisting of singer Daniel Daley and producer Nineteen85, soon found themselves on the defensive, having to explain that the sentiment behind the song was part of the bigger storyline of their upcoming album, Working On My Karma. Diving even deeper, Jermaine Dupri, one of the album’s executive producers, promised that the album would speak to the challenges of a man.
As it turns out, a lot of those challenges include fidelity and dealing with the potential fallout of giving in to temptation. From the album’s opener, “Last Time” featuring BLEU, Daley’s confidence is on full display as he runs down the list of reasons why someone should leave her current man for him.
“Stay Faithful” paints a picture of a man filled with regret after letting down his better half. He laments stepping out multiple times, even revealing a pregnancy scare with one of the women he cheated with. By the time listeners get to “What’s Up” featuring Jagged Edge, Daley is now a man trying to move on after losing his love due to his transgressions as he fights the urge to reach out to her. Regret also permeates "Don't Take Your Love," the soulful centerpiece of the album.
“Daniel’s Interlude” finds Daley trying to get to the root of his f-boy ways. It’s also where he is his most vulnerable, dropping the cockiness while tracing his philandering ways back to his first heartbreak and issues with his mom.
The production is where Working On My Karma’s strength truly lies. Despite the toxicity of “If I Get Caught’”s lyrics, sampling Jay-Z’s “Song Cry” — on which he famously tries to make amends for his toxic ways in past relationships — is actually quite clever.
Meanwhile, “Take It Slow” builds itself around chopping up John Legend’s “Ordinary People” and splicing it with, of all things, “That’s My Juvie,” a 2008 New Orleans Bounce song by the late Magnolia Shorty, and somehow makes it work.
For all of the work Daley has put in to improve his karmic future through the album, it all seems for naught by the closer, “Get Even.” The slow burn of a song centers on Daley in the role of the other man, promising a woman that she can ring him up anytime her man treats her badly. Though he justifies it by revealing that she is cheating as a way of getting even after being cheated on herself, it definitely doesn’t seem like the best move for somebody trying to get right with karma.
Then again, the song (and the album as a whole) shows that despite having the best of intentions, some people have to lose love in order to better appreciate having it in the first place.- Advertisement - - Advertisement -