"Champagne Coast" is not at all what it first appears to be. I love music that seems slightly "off," and there is something strange going on with the sensibility of this piece. If one were not paying attention, one could write it off as a simple, fluffy, and forgettable R&B tune (even the video reads as a one-dimensional collage of also-ran clichés from second-rate urban videos). But there is something moody and introspective about this piece... notice the sparse instrumentation, the haunting quality of the quivering vocals, the atmospheric reverb, and the oddness of the melody itself. Add this to the inelegant, candid plea to "Come to my bedroom" sung in a rueful falsetto, and the end result is a sort of urban ambient/ trance music... (P.S. Clock Opera has done an awesome remix of this track.)
And "Sutphin Boulevard," with its visual references to the underground drag queen ballroom culture and vogueing (the abstract lyrics begin "Mother, see you in the May when I'm a boy"), exhibits all the qualities of the previous song. Anyone who looks beyond Top 40 will immediately sense that there is more happening here than initially perceived on the surface.