Tank Explains Taking His Music To New Heights with New Album 'Elevation'

Tank 2019

Tank 2019

Tank is pushing his career to new heights with his brand new album, Elevation.

Elevation is Tank's ninth full-length studio album following 2017's Savage, and the new record showcases 13 new songs including his new single "I Don't Think You're Ready," in addition to guest appearances from artists including Keith Sweat, Candice Boyd, JoJo, Omari Hardwick, Shawn Stockman, Carvena Jones, Dantè, Danotaÿ, Dunteá, Luke James and Major. Elevation also includes a remix of "Dirty" that features Chris Brown, Feather and Rahky.

The idea behind Tank's new album is what gives the body of work its name. The R&B veteran went into this album wanting to challenge himself and "elevate" his music. He tells iHeartRadio, "I always like to start off with a theme or a concept to really build around, to start wrapping my mind around the music and the lyrics and the melody and all these things that I want to use. And so when you title something Elevation, you got to be ready to push yourself to higher heights. You got to be ready to do some things you've probably never done before; try some things. And you've got to be ready to push the limits on the things that you've done well up until this point. So, Elevation just gave me a starting point, a pushing point, if you will, of just getting me to that place where I needed to be to make the project."

He adds, "Putting my new album Elevation together was a process that involved me just challenging myself; challenging myself to do better, to do more in spaces even where I felt I was great in. Just having those hard conversations with myself and saying, hey, you can do better at this or you can be better at that. You can have a tighter melody here, or you could dig deeper lyrically here, or sonically. From a production standpoint, you can grab from more different spaces and challenge yourself to put something cool on something different. So, this process has been, to me, one of my best because it's at a moment where I'm having a lot of success. I could've settled in that space, and just repeated it, and I just didn't want to. I wanted to do more. I wanted to go higher. I wanted to prove to myself that I'm not at the mountaintop, that I still have a ways to go, and we're going to continue elevating with this Elevation."

Elevation comes with a handful of features from R&B stars including Keith Sweat, JoJo and more. Tank tells us of his relationships with each artist and why he chose them to appear on his album, "The collaborations on the album, I think, give it a different kind of life. I really wanted to tap in with people that I admire from a gift standpoint, and people, for the most part, that I'm close to. Luke James is like a little brother to me, lived with me pretty much, actually really lived with me. And, to still be able to make music with my brother, who is one of the coldest vocals ever to grace this universe, I mean, that's a blessing. Omari, he goes from ghost to being this gifted poet/rapper, and I get to be part of the reason people get to hear it on a mainstream level. JoJo, we spent a lot of time in another place together and now we're both in new places, finding new life, and we get to find it together on this new album. So a lot of these features represent people that I've admired. I mean you talk about Keith Sweat, an OG in the game, a guy who I look up to, who's mentored me and given me good information and good advice about my own career. All of these things come full circle. It's not just kinda like throwing names in a hat and seeing who you pull out. But these are people who I'm connected to in some way, shape or form, and I think they help make the fabric of this album just a little bit more expensive, and I appreciate them for being here."

Tank shared his latest Elevation single, "I Don't Think You're Ready," over the summer, and he explains of the meaning behind the track, "I think people love to talk trash. When the attraction is there, and they've decided that this is going down, this is going to happen. And, somebody is looking for the upper hand, and they feel like their skill level is on another level than the next person. And they're like, 'I don't think you ready for this. I don't think you've seen this manner of lovemaking ever in your lifetime.' Like, 'I'm going to put some on you that you ain't going to be able to get off you, you feel?' So, 'I Don't Think You're Ready' just kind of speaks to that, to just getting in there, and talking that talk, man. Having that banter back and forth that used to create that anticipation before you even got there."

Elevation is Tank's ninth full-length album, as the star has spent the better part of the last two decades writing and releasing music, and touring. Reflecting on all that he's accomplished, he explains of how it feels to have released nine albums, "Looking back over my career, to be releasing my ninth studio album, I just think it's absolutely amazing. I think the maybe cooler part is that it matters. It's still in a place where I'm still partners with a major label. I'm still on a major tour. I'm still doing things at an even higher level than what I was doing them before on my ninth studio album, which is a blessing. I've been here for a long time. I've seen a lot of artists come and go, a lot of songwriters come and go, a lot of producers come and go, a lot of performers come and go, and I'm blessed to still be here. And that nine just kind of says a lot about the hard work and the dedication that we've put into this since day one. So I'm super excited about number nine."

Fans can catch Tank on "The Sketchbook Tour," along with Fantasia, Robin Thicke and Bonfyre. The tour kicked off in mid-October and will hit cities across the country including New York, Cleveland, Chicago, New Orleans, Tampa, Houston, Charlotte, and more, before wrapping up in Los Angeles on December 6th.

Tank tells us of the trek, "So I'm on this tour, 'The Sketchbook Tour,' which is Fantasia's tour, along with Robin Thicke and The Bonfyre, and it's just really great. It's really great to be, number one, surrounded by really talented people that are just getting on stage every night, and bringing it. I mean, bringing it 100%. But it's also an opportunity to be inspired. To see something that Fantasia is doing, see something that Robin's doing, see what the newcomer Bonfyre has to offer, and maybe give her some notes, give her some game on something. But she, you know, she got it. She knows what she do. And, all those elements combined, I think it just makes for a great experience for the fans, which is what I think we were all going for. I think we just wanted to put some amazing talent on stage, and give people an amazing R&B show — a high level R&B show. Because they deserve it. And, we deserve the opportunity to give it to them. So this 'Sketchbook Tour' is just on fire."

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