A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this music.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that 4 follows Beyonce's typical style: a few mature references here and there, though mostly clean throughout. More adult lyrics include some mentions of kissing and making love, a few allusions to drinking champagne and smoking, a handful of bleeped-out swear words, and a couple of oddly violent metaphors about how much Beyonce loves her guy. By and large, however, it's a pretty clean record that's OK for teens.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
With a title that bears no hidden meaning, 4 is the fourth solo record from the R&B superstar who also sports just a one-word name: Beyonce. Lyrically, the 12 songs are similar to dozens of Beyonce hits that have come before, with little in the way of questionable content other than a few mild references to kissing, sex, champagne, and smoking. Profanity is limited to only one outright "s--t" and a few more bleeped-out words ("s--t," "f--k," the "N" word). While there are a couple of strangely violent metaphors about love -- comparing the feeling to being shot and lit on fire -- they're overshadowed by the super-positive messages about being a strong, independent person and getting the most out of life. Overall, the album is another positive pick for teens.
Is it any good?
The slower, sultry quality of several of these tracks ("I Miss You," "Love on Top") allows Beyonce's amazing pipes to shine through especially well. Particularly notable highlights include the guest performance by rapper Andre 3000, one half of the Outkast duo, and the super-upbeat single "Girls (Run the World)."