The Bottom Line
From the release of the album Talk That Talk it seemed obvious that "Where Have You Been" would ultimately be released as a single. It has an effortless dance floor filling sound that makes it an obvious follow up to the #1 smash hit "We Found Love." Dr. Luke adds his sure hand with pop hooks to Calvin Harris' hugely popular dance sound of the moment. "Where Have You Been" sounds like an instant addition to the long long list of Rihanna hits.
- Strong vocals from Rihanna
- Effortless dance floor filling sound
- Memorable dubstep influenced breakdowns
- Little complexity to the song
- Written by Ester Dean, Lukasz Gottwald, Calvin Harris, Henry Walter, and Geoff Mack
- Produced by Dr. Luke, Cirkut, and Calvin Harris
- Released May 2012 by Def Jam
Guide Review - Rihanna - "Where Have You Been"
Like on most Calvin Harris productions, "Where Have You Been" may sound a bit underwhelming and simplistic at first. However, you will soon realize how easily the song's hook worms its way into your consciousness. The two building choruses that lead into a dubstep influenced breakdown are exhilarating. It won't be long before you are eager to hear the song again each time it comes to an end. "Where Have You Been" is the soundtrack for the search for a perfect lover on the dance floor, and it ends with the search still continuing.
Rihanna's vocal style on "Where Have You Been" is reminiscent of the beautiful vocals she contributed to Drake's "Take Care." She has developed a relaxed feel that envelops the listener in pleasing layers unlike her earlier more robotic delivery. This gives the song a more mature feel as well. The music video which accompanies "Where Have You Been" also shows steps forward as a performer in featuring Rihanna performing her most complex dance routines yet. It is very rewarding to see Rihanna continue to develop her performance skills in more sophisticated directions when it would be very easy for her to rest on the phenomenal success she has already achieved.
"Where Have You Been" does not rank as the very best of Rihanna's efforts. However, it is a worthy addition to her repertoire. Just as on "We Found Love," Rihanna demonstrates once again she can deliver as a dance diva. That puts her once again at the forefront of the dominant wave driving pop music today.