For a guy who put “love” in the title of three albums, the-Dream rarely comes across as a romantic. He’s more Don Juan than Romeo. Songwriter-to-the-stars Terius Nash’s first solo single, 2007′s “Shawty Is Da Shit,” claims “destiny” has brought him back to this woman, but he lists, like, a half dozen women’s names; by 2010′s sublimely libidinous Love King, he’s waxing rhapsodic over someone whose “ass so fat” he can only compare her to a brand of motorcycle (he’s also conspiring with T.I. for advice on buying back a scorned lover’s good graces with a “Make Up Bag“). A major exception to the-Dream’s loverboy pragmatism is Mariah Carey duet “My Love,” from 2009′s Love vs. Money, where he promises “endless love” and suggests he’d “go half on a baby.”
The-Dream hinted at this type of tenderness at times on this year’s solid Royalty: The Prequel, but even on the slow-motion serenade “Outkast,” where he pleads to “just love me endlessly,” he lends plausible deniability to his sweet-nothing coos by acknowledging, “I’m high as fuck and I’m drunk as fuck.” New song “Fruition,” which hit radio over the weekend, again imagines “loving you endlessly,” but here that’s “endlessly” more in the “hot love and emotion,” starlit ’80s night-drive sense from Drake‘s “Hold On, We’re Going Home.” With a soaring chorus, Prince-ly guitar flickers and smattering of horns, the-Dream has gone on all in on the love-song ideal. After a very strange 2014 — his civil rights-themed “Black,” though stirring when it arrived in April, has receded somewhat given all that has happened since, and he was also arrested on a felony assault charge — the Radio Killa heads into next year on a note of endless devotion. Long live the love king.
Listen to a radio rip below.