Justuss

by: Snow

Snow's third album finds him slowly emerging from the sophomore slump of his underwhelming Murder Love, but still not delivering any hit singles to rival the success of "Informer," from his debut. By now it's clear that he is more than just a novelty act, but he is still struggling to define a sound for himself that is something more than a hybrid of his influences. The album promisingly opens with the lightweight but enjoyable "Steedly Woa" (cf. Barrington Levy), but then falls flat with the forced pseudo-African sound and cookie-cutter politics of "Freedom" (on which the young Yami Bolo's talents are utterly wasted). "Mash Up da Nation" is more promising, combining the classic "Love Bump" rhythm with melodic and lyrical elements from "The Lion Sleeps Tonight." But for the most part, the album doesn't ever rise above the level of solidly pretty good. "Check Out the Way It's Going Down" would have been much better if Snow weren't so blatantly jacking Eek-A-Mouse's style; "Day and Night" would have been better if it weren't so smarmy. And the two closing tracks on the album would have been better if they were reggae songs instead of by-the-numbers synthetic R&B. Overall, this isn't a bad album at all, but 12 Inches of Snow remains the only essential title in this guy's catalog. ~ Rick Anderson

Please enable Javascript to view this page competely.