Review : Lemar - The Reason
VirginmediaLemar Obika belongs to the very select club of TV reality show graduates who have overcome the lack of credibility intrinsic in such origins to carve out a lengthy career. Despite coming only third on Fame Academy in 2002, his subsequent three albums have each sold over half a million copies while simultaneously spawning a slew of Top 10 singles. Why, then, does his media profile remain so resolutely low?
It may be because he lacks a killer punch. Despite being a fine technical singer and diligent post-Motown soul classicist, Lemar has to date only delivered one truly memorable, mighty single in 2004’s epic If There’s Any Justice. True to form, The Reason sees him deliver another slick, seemingly heartfelt set of R&B ballads and upbeat soul while never sounding truly exceptional: only Weight Of The World and Little Miss Heartbreaker linger lightly in the mind as the album fades....full text
GuardianDespite three previous albums each shifting half a million copies, Lemar seems to exist somewhere below the mainstream pop radar, which does something of a disservice to his talents. On this new collection he's at his best when, as on lead single 'If She Knew', he grasps the electronic R&B coat tails of US stars like Ne-Yo and Chris Brown. 'The Reason' proves to be an enjoyably addictive listen....full text
Hangout.altsoundsHaving followed Lemar all the way through the old-school Fame Academy series (back when the telly format was reasonably fresh!), I’ve always considered the Tottenham-born soulster to have more musical integrity and smoother grooves that many other R&B artists.
R&B is not my thing. On the surface I often think of the genre as pretentious, plain,and a straightforward blast of OTT production and lyrical egotism, but I wanted to give Lemar’s fourth studio album, new release “The Reason”, a fighting chance to prove to me that good quality commercial music is not a thing of the past. And also that stubborn indie-pilgrims can indulge in something more accessible occasionally!...full text
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