The Bottom Line
- Very Listenable
- Solid Vocals
- Nothing is Particularly Distinctive
- Occasionally Cliched Subject Matter
- Smooth R&B
Guide Review - Review: Javier - 'Left of Center'
Cases in point: the first single, "You're the One," is a funk-guitar fueled exercise that stretches R&B's boundaries. And the alluring Spanish guitar-driven "Dance For Me," is also impressive, particularly since its Javier himself who's actually the guitarist. (FYI, A lukewarm reggaeton remix of "Dance For Me" closes out the album.) In addition, gospel is the order of the day on the uplifting "The Answer is Yes."
Left of Center (the title refers to the LP's slightly-different feel from most modern R&B) is a delight for anyone who loves the adult contemporary side of modern R&B music, exemplified by such acts as Brian McKnight, Toni Braxton and Babyface. However, unlike the aforementioned, Javier at this stage in his career seems to lack the depth and emotive skills that the best singers have.
On the plus side, unlike many contemporary R&B albums, which feature wall-to-wall 'super-producers' and numerous guest vocalists, refreshingly, there's only one guest singer here, soul man Anthony Hamilton, who adds a layer of excellence to one the album's best tracks, "Count On Me."