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Omarion - O

Published by Warren Dell under on Thursday, June 09, 2005
Crossing the line between boy band and R’n’B act, teen heartthrobs B2K seemed to have the world at their feet. After two albums and a successful film, which spawned the hits Badaboom, Got’s To Be and Bump, Bump, Bump the last thing expected was for the group to part ways. But early last year that’s what happened and it seemed obvious that Omarion would follow his brother Marques Houston and go solo.

O is his debut offering and although the album plays it safe and doesn’t stray too far away from his B2K days, some of the tracks display a more racy, raunchier side and overall O is a decent album.

The album opens up with the dreamy I Wish, about a friend who Omarion falls for, and then leads into the first of two cuts where heavyweight producers have been brought in. Touch is produced by The Neptunes and features Pharrell on backing vocals while Drop That Heater is another track from Rodney Jerkins welcome return to the scene.

Both tracks are up-tempo numbers ready for club spins and will likely feature as singles. In fact it’s the up tempo tracks that are the albums highlights. Take It off has another heavy beat behind it and sees Omarion in playa mode where he gets straight to it dropping the line, I don’t mean no disrespect/but a nigga really trying to fuck witchu.

Big Boi of Outkast fame provides the big name guest appearance on Never Gonna Let You Go but in truth, the funky track doesn’t really need his appearance as Omarion does a good job of the track himself. And that’s no disrespect to Big Boi, it’s just another example of marketing guys wanting to put an emcee on an R’n’B when it’s not needed.

On the slower material we get to see more of that maturity and the transition from teen heartthrob to young adult. While tracks like I Know and Fiening You lack the lyrics that Usher would deliver, Growing Pains is an interesting number where Omarion gets off his chest the B2K split.

The title track O and In The Dark will have the young teeny boppers going wild but the album is good enough to provide the older fans of R’n’B with value for money. Like the recent Mario release, Omarion isn’t the finished article by far but as is evident on his debut, he will have a long career ahead of him and has taken the jump from being in a successful group to going solo with aplomb.


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