Album: Chapter II

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Album:

Chapter II

Artist: Ashanti
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Genres:
Label: Def Jam

This sophomore effort by 2002 hip-pop debutante Ashanti is aimed squarely at the mainstream portion of her audience. Where she made her name with radio-ready duets featuring Ja Rule and Fat Joe, Chapter II goes light on the rap, opting for only a small handful of cameos by co-producer Chink Santana. The mostly mid-tempo tracks are pleasant, but much of the album feels like an unfinished structure that’ll only be fully built when the songs are remixed for the airwaves. Still, with the star’s assured (and nicely undersold) vocals front and center, it amounts…

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This sophomore effort by 2002 hip-pop debutante Ashanti is aimed squarely at the mainstream portion of her audience. Where she made her name with radio-ready duets featuring Ja Rule and Fat Joe, Chapter II goes light on the rap, opting for only a small handful of cameos by co-producer Chink Santana. The mostly mid-tempo tracks are pleasant, but much of the album feels like an unfinished structure that’ll only be fully built when the songs are remixed for the airwaves. Still, with the star’s assured (and nicely undersold) vocals front and center, it amounts to a breath of fresh air from production company Murder Inc. Note: “Breakup 2 Makeup” once more updates the Chaka Khan/Mary J. Blige classic “Sweet Thing.” —Rickey Wright

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