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Album Review: Jagged Edge – “The Remedy”

Image Credit: JaggedEdge.net

Jagged Edge – The Remedy (2011)

It’s been four years since the release of the last Jagged Edge album, Baby Makin’ Project, and there was little about the album that was traditional J.E.; though the production was more consistent than their self-titled 2006 project, the quality was severely lacking as the group struggled to juggle their R&B and pop sensibilities. With this latest effort, Jagged Edge hopes to provide the Remedy to their musical woes, attempting to win back fans with the classic J.E. touch while also reviving a stagnant contemporary R&B scene.

For the most part, The Remedy succeeds in its mission, as this album combines the best elements of J.E. Heartbreak and Hard, while keeping the sound largely fresh for 2011.

The production is mostly handled by J.E.’s own Casey Bros. (Brandon and Brian), whose practice in the studio appears to have paid off. In addition to working the boards, the twins appear to have sharpened their songwriting skills, as their lyrics show a bit more maturity to reflect the group’s age and evolution. While the quartet has remained intact since their 1997 debut, their sound has changed in stark contrast to the familiarity of their vocals. As much as the group tries to mimic their hit ballads of the past, however, they fall barely short of their goal. This does not detract from the quality of the album, as their attempts are much better than their efforts on previous projects.

The Remedy is not nearly as schizophrenic as Jagged Edge or Baby Makin’ Project, as the album maintains a consistent sound from beginning to end. The album was likely made with the intention of continuous playback in the bedroom, which largely succeeds in that end. There is no room for social introspection here, nor should listeners expect otherwise on an album with song titles such as “Let’s Make Love,” “Lipstick,” and “When the Bed Shakes.” This is essentially the album that Baby Makin’ Project should’ve been.

The only significant gripes with the album may come as a matter of personal taste: while I love the album, very few songs stood out as singles, which could hurt the commercial viability of the project. Then again, it is entirely possible that the group made this album strictly for their existing fanbase, with no real intentions of conversion. This is far from a radio-made album, as each song is arranged in such a way that makes it difficult to skip tracks without the experience feeling incomplete.

In many respects, The Remedy is an album made for 1997, that was released in 2011. Given the current state of R&B, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Verdict: 4 out of 5 (Great) — Old-school Jagged Edge with a new-school twist; the album that their last two efforts should’ve been.

Agree? Disagree? Continue the conversation below in the comments section, or follow me on Twitter (@FranchiseSAYS).

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About Max Mikado

Pro Wrestling Performer & Broadcaster. #HouseOfMikado. Writer. Humorist.

Discussion

5 thoughts on “Album Review: Jagged Edge – “The Remedy”

  1. Thanks for this! I definitely hear what you’re saying about how this album could have come out in 1997 and been successful and I have to say I’m glad it’s dropping now when there’s not an album coming out every week that’s worth listening to. In 1997 I could hardly keep up with all the good music. Now, in 2011…not so much. It’s a refreshing album from these fellas.

    Posted by Sunny Dee | June 23, 2011, 8:08 pm
    • Thanks for the feedback! Even though I wasn’t a big fan of “A Jagged Era” when it first came out, I grew up with J.E. after hearing “Jagged Little Thrill” and then going back to listen to “J.E. Heartbreak.” “Hard” still stands as my favorite album of their discography, but “The Remedy” is certainly giving it a run for its money!

      I’ve just been cynical about the state of music lately, particularly with the mess that R&B has become after Chris Brown became the next big R&B/pop star in 2005. With all the good that Usher did in 2004 with “Confessions” in bringing R&B back to the mainstream spotlight, it was undone by the overly-pop stylings of C.B., and it certainly doesn’t help that Beyonce’s albums still blur that line between pop and R&B. I haven’t thoroughly enjoyed an R&B album from beginning-to-end since Bobby Valentino’s debut and Avant’s “Director.”

      Posted by the FRANCHISE | June 23, 2011, 8:40 pm
  2. I ABSOLUTELY LOVE “THE REMEDY” AS WELL AS “BABY MAKING PROJECT”!!! FOR THE BEDROOM, PREFER “BABY MAKING PROJECT’ DEFINATELY! I HAVE NO IDEA WHERE UR MUSIC TASTE IS COMING FROM, BUT IT SEEMS TO BE ALL OVER THE PLACE!!!

    Posted by Mo | July 6, 2011, 4:19 pm
    • My only problem with Baby Makin’ Project was that there were only 3 or 4 tracks that lived up to the title, while the rest of the album sounded like it belonged on another Jagged Edge album. Songs like “Whole Town Laughing” and “Me, That’s Who” were good songs, but didn’t fit the idea of something to vibe with in the bedroom since they were break-up songs. I still keep the album in rotation, but I don’t throw in the whole CD when I’m making a slow jam playlist.

      My musical taste is everywhere! I’m mostly R&B and hip-hop, but I listen to everything!

      Thanks for the comment!

      Posted by the FRANCHISE | July 6, 2011, 9:28 pm
  3. Speaking from a dude who’s been a fan for 11 years strong, this album was a fare and safe attempt for the groups come back. The selection of songs chosen for the album I believe could have been alot better. I believe sns played it safe by giving it that old R&B feel from the past but with a new twist, of cours. According to one of the twins, it was tweeted “the direction of the album JE played no part in. It was the labels decision to hand pick what they wanted the album to be” to say the least. <– A tweet replying in responds to a fan who felt the album was lacking in production, which i agree. I was looking forward to records like calendar, you look good with me, and more of the new feel. Dont get me wrong i enjoy listening to the album, im sold to their craft. With better production i believe they can be a mind blowing group again.. I listen to alot of JE records from unreleased to underground mixtapes, whatever. And I know they still have the potential to be great in mainstream

    Posted by AedgeFan | November 2, 2011, 1:05 pm

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