Urban Contemporary, 2011
Nicole Scherzinger may be a spectacularly awful judge-cum-mentor on America’s version of The X-Factor, but there is a reason to try to remember how to spell the last name of the former lead vocalist of The Pussycat Dolls – her debut effort (not counting that previous CD that was never released) is a solid collection of pop songs.
This album may not be a drastic departure from The Pussycat Dolls’ repertoire, but songs like the title track and Don’t Hold Your Breath are perfectly produced and catchy singalong songs that are made for feel good moments. Boasting insanely infectious choruses and funky vibes, the songs here work wonderfully even when Ms Scherzinger is affecting some dodgy accent in tracks like Club Banger Nation. For some cooling down, there are also ballads such as the mellow vibes of AmenJena and Desperate.
What is impressive here is that Ms Scherzinger manages to make these songs uniquely hers despite the fact that RedOne’s productions are on the generic club beat girl side. It’s her voice. She smoothly slips into persona for her songs and it shows in the nuances of her vocals. She’s the seductress in some songs, the lovelorn damsel in sad ballads, and the life of the party in songs made for the clubs. Her dynamic presence, evident in her vocals, shines even when the songs are made up of generic beats, and therefore, this is one album that valiantly shakes its booty to the finish line.