by: Cécile

To North American listeners, Cécile's Waiting may seem like the first album of a newcomer, but it actually comes on the heels of several European and Japanese releases. Her musical maturity is well in evidence here, even if the one-note theme of her "bad gyal" image seems a bit forced and repetitive. (Yes, you're sexually independent and aggressive; yes, you're an unrepentant gold digger; yes, your friends had better stop bragging about their boyfriends' bedroom prowess if they want you not to poach on their territory. But don't you have anything else you'd like to chat about?) What saves her album from being drearily repetitive is the combination of nicely varied and consistently powerful rhythms and her sharp, witty delivery, both of which are most powerfully displayed on tracks like "So Fly" (an excellent combination with Beenie Man delivered over a solid reggaeton groove), the funky one-drop of "No Disturb Sign," and the startlingly rhythmically varied "Kinda Lovin." When she stops chatting and starts singing the results can be fairly pedestrian, but one of the album's strongest tracks is actually a straight-ahead lovers rock number titled "Waiting," which closes the album in fine style. ~ Rick Anderson

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