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CD REVIEW: Ryan Leslie - Ryan Leslie
By Gian F - 04/14/2009 - 04:01 PM EDT

Artist: Ryan Leslie
Album: Ryan Leslie
Label: Casablanca/UniversalMotown
Genre: R&B
Sounds Like: Teddy Riley/John Legend
Technical Grade: 10/10
Production/Musicianship Grade: 10/10
Commercial Value: 9/10
Overall Talent Level: 9/10
Songwriting Skills: 9/10
Performance Skill: 9/10
Best Songs: Diamond Girl, Just Right, You're Fly, Valentine, Quicksand, Addiction
Weakness: ?
CD Review:

Ryan Leslie, a respected music producer and emerging music artist in his own right, has finally debuted his first project.


The previously released, and underachieving “Diamond Girl,” still qualifies as his most commercial track (and overall most commercial song for my 2008 Muse’s Muse Awards), along with the Cassie enhanced “Addiction,” but he delivers a slew of songs with this endeavor that are sure to catapult him into the same spotlight that’s occupied by the artists he has produced.


The instantly accessible “Just Right,” gets my vote for the second most commercial track with its sing/rap lyrics and strong hook which is punctuated by Ryan’s almost exaggerated falsetto. It’s a fun and sexy song. “You’re Fly” is an up-tempo, highly melodic ode to the attractive and stylish woman.

Despite being the beatmaker for so many, he comes through with two down-tempo grooves that are as infectious as they are soothing. The new valentine’s day anthem, appropriately called “Valentine” features an almost nursery rhyme-like chorus and alternate melodies that cause it to linger in your subconscious long after you hear it, but it’s the lyrical depth of “Out Of The Blue” which is likely to catch-on and linger at Urban and AC radio stations. Many will be able to relate to it after hearing it just once.


This project was well-done, and well worth the wait.


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