Friday, October 8, 2010

Song of the week: "She Said" by Plan B

"She Said" is the second single from Plan B's second album The Defamation of Strickland Banks - a concept album whose songs tell the fictitious tale of a sharp-suited British soul singer who finds fame with bitter-sweet love songs, but then loses everything when he ends up in prison for a crime he didn't commit. Now it’s been a while since I posted a song of the week, hell it’s been a while since I posted period, but I came across this song, and liked it, but after reading the concept of the entire album, I then LOVED it; it also doesn’t hurt that Plan B’s voice is not nearly as shoddy as his stage name, in fact it’s quite brilliant and he knows how to use it to draw out emotion, even the rap sections don’t feel odd. The album basically tells the story from the first-hand perspective of Strickland Banks, a fictional character played by Plan B. The album's opening tracks, "Love Goes Down" and "Writing's on the Wall", are love songs sung by Strickland Banks at a concert, and are likely to be about his girlfriend, to whom he refers later in the album. "Stay Too Long" follows him and his entourage as they celebrates the success of his concert with a night out which culminates in him having a one night stand with a woman. In "She Said" we learn that this woman is obsessed with his music and believes herself to be in love with him. He rejects her so she alleges that he raped her. The subsequent trial results in his incarceration and in "Welcome to Hell" he is sent to prison, and much of the rest of the album is about his experience inside prison, isolation, abuse, etc. This results in his abuse at the hands of other prisoners, resulting in him purchasing a shiv on the prison black market throughout the course of "Traded In My Cigarettes". In "Prayin'" he is confronted by another prisoner who attacks him. With the help of another inmate Strickland kills the attacker in self-defense, with the other inmate taking the blame, and is burdened with this guilt during "Darkest Place". The penultimate tracks, "Free" and "I Know A Song" detail initially his anger, then his acceptance of his life inside prison. The last track, "What You Gonna Do" Strickland is in court again as new evidence has been brought up on his case. The album finishes with the listener not sure of whether he is sent back to prison or released, leaving it open to interpretation. I can’t even give any commentary on ‘She Said’ besides that it must be heard.

1 comment:

  1. Nice review of Plan B's single, hope to listen it soon.