Earlier this year, Kelly said that the album will find him returning to the sexually charged R&B that was his calling card in the early Nineties, as opposed to the classic soul of his most recent, 2010’s Love Letter and 2012’s Write Me Back. “I love that I can play around with all types of music,” he recently told Rolling Stone. “I did Love Letter and Write Me Back and those were fun albums for me to do, because they took me back to music I love. But I wanted to change lanes with this new album and remind people of the TP-2.com and 12 Play style of music I can do – ‘Kellz music!'”
Black Panties includes 13 tracks, some of which feature guest appearances by Ludacris, Kelly Rowland, and Jeezy. The first single, “My Story,” found Kelly working with rapper 2 Chainz. The second, “Genius,” is all Kelly, who proclaims his worth as a “sex genius.”
Prior to the release of the album – which features artwork depicting Kelly dressed as a Phantom of the Opera-type character, playing an almost-naked woman (she’s wearing black panties) with a cello bow – Kelly had been busy recording collaborations with Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber and Bruno Mars. The deluxe edition of Black Panties features cover art of Kelly lying down, surrounded by nearly naked women who are all clad in only the titular lingerie. That edition also includes four bonus tracks, which feature Future, Migos and Juicy J.