Alicia Keys’ Underwhelming “28 Thousand Days” Return

alicia-keys-28-thousand-days-coverFirst sneak-peaked in the Levi’s ads she recently participated in, Alicia Keys’ “28 Thousand Days” is a celebration of life and living it to the fullest. Many fans have  missed the artist’s raspy vocals and sultry bellows. Usually, we can count on Alicia Keys to deliver straight fire, but here, she gives us lukewarm at best.

The songs Alicia Keys has written, produced, and performed have historically been of two types: a) the soulful or b) the anthemic. Some examples include: “You Don’t Know My Name” and “Unbreakable”. “Un-thinkable (I’m Ready)” and “Empire State of Mind”. And her new release, “28 Thousand Days,” is definitely in the latter category, very reminiscent of her recent track “New Day”. But in a rare misstep for Ms. Keys, the musical execution is flawed.

To be fair, “28 Thousand Days” is listenable enough. You might tap your toes or bob your head as the track plays. However, this is not on the level of her string of hits like “Fallin”, “Try Sleeping With A Broken Heart”, or “Girl On Fire.” With its thumping bass line, manic piano, and blazing horns, Keys is aiming for a bombastic, urban anthem. And each of those elements soar on this composition. But once Keys adds her vocals, the entire energy level of the track drops. It literally sounds like it should be playing while you’re picking out jeans from the denim wall at the Gap.

There is universal relatability in the lyrics. On the chorus she chants:

“If you had twenty-eight thousand days

Who would you love? Where would you go? What would you celebrate?

I’m telling you that life’s to short to just throw it away

So have the time of your life”

The message is much appreciated (Twenty-eight thousand days is approximately 76 years, the average span of a human life), but Keys will need something stronger than a feel-good message to score a real radio hit.

Stream the track below, and if you’re feeling it, purchase a copy here.

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Daren W. Jackson

Daren is one half of the Water Cooler Convos team. He's a writer, music connoisseur, and comic book geek who spends his free time working on his novel and other short stories.