8 long years separated fans of Toni Braxton from her last solo studio effort, ‘Pulse,’ and her newest offering, ‘Sex & Cigarettes.’
Granted, it’s only been half that time since the diva released new music overall, last time tapping longtime collaborator Babyface to assist. But, unlike that album – 2014’s Grammy-winning ‘Love, Marriage, & Divorce’ – ‘Cigarettes’ puts the 50-year-old beauty back front and center by her lonesome.
Kicked off by the Urban contemporary cuts ‘Deadwood’ and ‘Long As I Live,’ Braxton’s latest project, critically speaking, has been welcomed by longtime fans as a worthy entry to her impressive discography. Unfortunately, if industry analyst predictions are to go by, that sentiment was not shared by the music buying public at large.
Undoubtedly experiencing a “soft launch” to say the least, ‘Cigarettes’ (to date) has not been provided the promo push its predecessors were afforded. If that will impact the album’s commercial performance in the long run has yet to be seen, but in the here and now the LP looks to have an uphill climb ahead: