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LLOYD Street Love

LLOYD Street Love

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It's always a pleasure to see talented young artists grow up in front of the public eye. For example, Marques Houston began his career as a novelty kiddie act, but eventually morphed into a serious singer and sex symbol. Similarly, Mario came a long way between the puppy love struck youth on "Braid My Hair" and the mature vocalist on "Let Me Love You."

Lloyd has had a very long career, beginning when he was 10-years-old as a member of the Disney group N-Toon. That was nearly 11 years ago and quite a few things have changed, but it seems as though his most significant years of maturation occurred between his 2004 debut, Southside, and his latest release, Street Love. With stronger vocals, slick productions and authentic charm, Street Love bests its predecessor in every way imaginable.

Where Southside was mostly carried by its title track, which featured Ashanti as a convenient means of using her clout to attract interest in him, Lloyd really doesn't need much help this time around. 13 of the 15 tracks on Street Love are Lloyd front and center, and he makes the most of every moment.

"Incredible" and "Valentine" are prime examples of his strengths. On the former track, he shows his sultry side over a bass-heavy Jazze Pha production. He flosses his breezy falsetto with ease and holds the listener's attention for every second. The mellowly expressive "Valentine" alternates between a falsetto chorus and gentle vocals on the perfectly poetic verses.

Clearly Lloyd can hold his own on slow jams, but he's no slouch on the club jams. "Get It Shawty," the second single from the album, became a huge radio and dance floor hit as a result of James Lackey's hot beat and Lloyd's ability to create his own groove.

Though the album is mostly guest free, the pair of moments with guest spots are undeniably strong. The original version and remix of "You" both twist Spandau Ballet's "True" into fantastic forms. The original version features two great verses from Lil Wayne (another guy who has matured in front of the world) and favors a mild interpolation of the chorus from "True." The remix, titled "I Want You," with an intro verse from Andre 3000 and middle verse from Nas, also brings in "True's" classic melody. Yet the wonderful thing about both songs, particularly the original version, Lloyd carries these songs on his own: even without the raps they would be hits.

Street Love is impressive by any standard. It would be no surprise for this album to nab Lloyd multiple Grammy nominations in the R&B categories. Though he's is not an all-around talent like Ne-Yo or R. Kelly, what he does he does well and he is still showing great promise. Barely in his 20s but already sounding like a veteran, Lloyd is a guy to watch.

1. Lloyd (Intro)

2. You - Featuring Lil Wayne

3. Certified

4. I Don't Mind

5. Get It Shawty

6. Incredible

7. Valentine

8. Hazel

9. Player's Prayer

10. Killing Me

11. Take You Home

12. What You Wanna Do

13. StreetLove

14. One For Me

15. I Want You Remix - Featuring Andre 3000 & NAS
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Last Updated: 17 Dec 2007 19:13:31 PST home  |  about  |  terms  |  contact
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