NEW YORK (Billboard) - Solange Knowles wastes no time setting the record straight about comparisons to older sister Beyonce on her upcoming second album, “Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams.”
“I‘m not her and never will be / two girls gone in different directions, striving towards the same galaxy / let my star light shine on its own / No, I‘m no sister, I‘m just my God-given name,” Knowles sings on the appropriately titled opener “God Given Name.”
“Solange wasn’t concerned with being perfect on this album,” the elder Knowles, 26, told Billboard.com. “Beyonce’s already got pop and she’s perfect at it. Solange just wanted to sing from the heart. She wants her feelings and emotions to touch you. That’s why ‘God Given Name’ was purposely the first song -- so she can share with you how different she is.”
Knowles, 21, definitely attempts to stray from her big sister’s staple sound on the new album, which Geffen Records will release on August 26. With the help of producers the Neptunes, Jack Splash, Q-Tip and Mark Ronson, “Sol-Angel” is less pop, with more of a modern twist on hip-hop and R&B flecked with tinges of blues and jazz.
And, unlike her sister -- who has yet to go public about her relationship and recent marriage to rapper Jay-Z -- the divorced mom has no reservations about sharing personal experiences. Tracks like the break-up song “Valentine’s Day,” the regretful “T.O.N.Y.,” about a one-night stand, and the Pharrell-produced lead single “I Decided,” all demonstrate her storytelling abilities.
Knowles will embark on “The Art of Love” tour featuring Raheem Devaughn and Chrisette Michele starting next week, and although details were scant, she is currently negotiating another stateside tour and an international endorsement deal.
Knowles’ 2003 debut, “Solo Star” (Columbia) sold 112,000 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen Soundscan.