Review : JASON DERULO - JASON DERULO
EwOn three singles from Jason Derulo's self-titled debut album, he starts the song by enthusiastically crooning his own name. It's a pretty goofy thing for the young singer to do, but the third-person shout-out to himself makes a certain sense after taking in the whole record. Derulo tackles an array of earnest trance-pop, glossy guitar rock and buttoned-down R&B over the album's nine tracks. His reminders that a single artist is responsible are actually rather helpful.
Weirdly, the post-genre pastiche works. Derulo gets a strong songwriting assist from producer J.R. Rotem here -- one rarely waits more than a few seconds for something deliriously catchy to happen. He's a nimble vocalist who uses Auto-Tune the way T-Pain does -- as an accent to already sharp melodies like the churning "In My Head" or the fizzy disco-pop of "The Sky's the Limit." The Haitian American Derulo also knows exactly when to deploy his Caribbean lilt to ramp up a song's melodrama, and it's one of his best vocal tricks. ...full text
Guardian"Nine hits, one album" claims the sticker on the front of this 20-year-old Floridian's debut – an optimistic way of selling a record that's produced precisely two hits to date. To give Jason Derülo credit, though, there will undoubtedly be more. He's followed an increasingly well-trodden path to R&B success by first serving an apprenticeship as a songwriter (for Lil' Wayne, Diddy, et al), so he's got the craft of making modern, hyper-slick tunes nailed. It's no surprise that his first single, the Imogen Heap-sampling Whatcha Say, sold 3m downloads: its chattering beat, and deceptively simple hookline add up to incredible catchiness. He achieves the same infectiousness on The Sky's the Limit, with its Flashdance … What a Feeling sample. The busy production feels impersonal, though, and producer JR Rotem has made far too free with the Auto-Tune, robbing Derülo of the idiosyncrasies that make an album worth hearing....full text
AllmusicEven though he began his career writing hits for the likes of Diddy and Sean Kingston, singer/songwriter Jason Derülo always had his eye on becoming a solo performer. His Auto-Ttuned, Imogen Heap-sampling debut single, “Watcha Say,” was an infectious, slick, and on-point way launch a career, but his debut album is less satisfying, even with plenty of the same well-crafted, future R&B as his breakthrough tune. As Derulo seems entirely devoted to the song, the problem may lie with the album format itself. This one barely fits the definition at a scant nine songs, and there’s little attention paid to the overall flow, but if you want R&B that sparkles and dazzles, there are nine quick fixes here, each one just dying to get stuck in your head. The talented J.R. Rotem handles the production for the whole show, blurring the lines between dance-pop and R&B on highlights like “In My Head.” It’s clever how “The Sky’s the Limit” knicks a bit of “Flashdance (What a Feeling)” for its melody, and the bright and shiny “Love Hangover” is equally ‘80s-flavored besides being a rock-solid tune. As a performer, the smooth Derulo -- made even smoother by Auto-Tune -- delivers it all so effortlessly that none of that persuasive debut hunger comes through, making this stylish and short set one to admire rather than advocate....full text
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