Rated R is the fourth studio album by Barbadian recording artist Rihanna, first released November 20, 2009, on Def Jam Recordings. The album is a musical distance from her previous effort Good Girl Gone Bad (2007), which contained up-tempo and ballad-oriented songs, and it heavily incorporated pop and dance-pop musical styles. Rated R features different foreboding and angry tone, in terms of musical and lyrical direction, and incorporates elements of hip hop, rock, and dubstep. The album also incorporated other musical genres, such as Dancehall in the Jamaican inspired “Rude Boy” and Latin in “Te Amo”.
Recording sessions for the album took place during March to November 2009 at several recording studios throughout United States and Europe. Rihanna together with L.A. Reid, Jay-Z and Carl Sturken and Evan Rogers, executively produced the album and worked with several record producers, including Chase & Status, StarGate, The-Dream, Ne-Yo, and Brian Kennedy. The album also included several featured vocalists and instrumentalist, including Young Jeezy, Will.i.am and Slash who played the guitars in “Rockstar 101”.
Upon its release Rated R received positive reviews from music critics, who praised Rihanna’s mature performance, and described the album as her most layered and heartfelt effort. The album debuted at number four on the US Billboard 200 chart, selling 181,000 copies in its first week in the United States. The album reached number-one in Norway, Switzerland and on the US Billboard R&B/Hip Hop Albums. On the UK Albums Chart, the album reached a peak of nine.
The album produced five singles, including the international hits “Russian Roulette”, “Rude Boy” and “Te Amo”, together with the US releases “Hard”. “Wait Your Turn” was also released as the albums promotional single. “Russian Roulette” was released as albums lead single and managed to reach top-ten in seventeen countries and topped the charts in Norway and Switzerland. “Hard” reached number nine in the United States and became her thirteenth top-ten single re-tying her with Beyoncé Knowles as the female artist with the most top-ten hit singles in the United States. “Rude Boy” was a commercial success and became the only single from the album that topped the US Billboard Hot 100 for five consecutive weeks. “Rockstar 101” was released in the United States and managed to reach number two on Billboard’s Hot Dance Club Songs. “Te Amo”, the last international released single, managed to reach number one on Brazilian Hot 100 Airplay and peaked within the top-ten in nine other countries.
1. Mad House
2. Wait Your Turn
3. Hard featuring Jeezy
4. Stupid In Love
5. ROCKSTAR 101 (feat. Slash)
6. Russian Roulette
7. Fire Bomb
8. Rude Boy
9. Photographs (feat. Will.i.am)
11. Te Amo
12. Cold Case Love
13. The Last Song
14. Hole in my head (feat. Justin Timberlake)