Breakroom features the baritone vocals of SaVannah Jones, a happy throwback to Latifah’s pro-woman sentiments mixed with Nonchalant’s no-nonsense lyrical flow. Joining her for an unexpected lighter touch is Chyle MC, successfully nailing the sound Pharrell so annoyingly reaches for (i.e. new age Curtis Mayfield). The soulful duo rolls through each track on Beautiful Universe with bounce, attitude and a hint of God-driven inspiration.
With almost no condescension, Breakroom is able to deliver a number of cautionary tales on desire, heartache and frustration. The spiritual element makes room for plenty of sin-related metaphors, but Breakroom manages to keep their lyrics grounded in real life observations as told by two unabashedly grown folks who have been there and done that. Production by Vitamin D and DJ DR perfectly matches the group, never upstaging the subtle soul the two perfectly execute.
The pair’s only stumble in balancing the righteous with the ‘right on’ comes on “Meaning,” with the opening words and chorus shouting, “Go Jesus!” It really doesn’t matter how big of a heathen or holy-roller you are, such a line will have you vomiting in the collection plate. Elsewhere, Jones’ lyrics border on trite as she attempts to match the simplicity of her scaled down beats. On tracks like “Despise” where she addresses ‘the haters,’ her formerly intriguing flow falls more along the lines of Audio Two with less humor. Despite this, Breakroom lives up to its name, straddling the space between hip-hop, R&B and inspirational to offer something refreshingly new.