(The Root) — When Chris Brown released Fortune in June, the singer’s fifth studio album scored mostly mixed-to-negative reviews. Time magazine called it “one of the blandest RB albums in recent memory,” but a lot of critiques took issue with Brown personally as much as musically. Rolling Stone’s reviewer complained about spending 13 songs with “a guy so reviled mosquitoes won’t bite him,” and many other reviews took a similar course.
Most of Brown’s fans seem to have forgiven his infamous domestic violence episode with Rihanna from three years back. (So, it would seem, has Rihanna: The two appeared on each other’s remix in February. The singer even went so far as to admit to Oprah that she still loves him.) Critics apparently have a longer memory. And yet, should moral judgments of behavior determine how we appreciate music?
A photo of a brutalized Rihanna from celeb-news