The Bottom Line
Rihanna heads into midtempo sex and romance mode here with the second single from the upcoming Loud album. She pulls in Drake for a clever rap, and it looks like another smash hit. The song is an effortless glide for the ears likely to warm up more than a few evenings for lovers. Rihanna's vocals are solid and pleasing.
- Drake's clever wordplay in guest rap
- The hook kicks in immediately
- Romantic, sexy mood
- Sweet nothings lyrics
- It's all somewhat simple and ordinary
- Written by Ester Dean, Mikkel S. Eriksen, Tracy Hale, B. Evans, Tor Erik Hermansen, and Aubrey Graham
- Produced by Stargate
- Released October 2010 by Def Jam
Guide Review - Rihanna featuring Drake - "What's My Name"
There it is, the chorus opens the track with "Oh na na...what's my name?" and the hook is firmly implanted. It's not long before Drake's added on rap kicks in with clever, sexy and romantic rhyming. Then the dreamy drum machine rhythms and Rihanna's vocals kick in again. This is a hit.
"What's My Name?" won't be Rihanna's most memorable hit among the 17 top 10 smashes she is likely to count once this song completes its chart run. Lyrically, the song amounts to romantic, sexual sweet nothings over a simple, atmospheric backing track. It is a significant shift away from the intensity of Rihanna's Rated R period at this time last year. Rihanna has adeptly demonstrated she can run a wide range from powerful, steely, emotional songs to gentle romantic fluff.
There is something undeniably brilliant in Rihanna's ability to shift the styles of her music enough to consistently maintain an audience's interest. Repeating herself would likely soon result in a fade of commercial fortunes. However, she has remained at a commercial peak since she first hit the charts with "Pon De Replay" in 2005. Her hit streak continues here, and "What's My Name?" is a good addition to that romantic evening playlist.