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JFraze – “Brighter Dayz”
Released: 2011
Reviewed by: Ed Welch aka E Pluribus Unum
Rating: 6.2 (Out of 10)
[xrr rating=6.2/10]

JFraze, aka The Minister of Praize, steps up to the plate with Brighter Dayz.  From a glance the album looks like it has a lot of potential with a solid list of features ranging from Billy Beck (Ohio Players) to other features like Humble Tip.  When the “Higher Intro” hits the first thing the music reminds me of is “Crooklyn”.  Yes… ”Crooklyn.” …that old movie that didn’t do too well in the theatres.  The music just has that ol’ school feel, and singing “When I say Jesus, y’all say Christ” didn’t help at all.  But wait, that’s just the music right?  Well, he actually starts singing without the music first.  So, to be totally honest my very first impression was…”man this guy sounds like Montell Jordan!”  You can take that how you want.  If you liked Montell Jordan, then you’ll love this album. If you didn’t like Montell Jordan…eh…sorry.  This is just “how he do it.”  🙂

After the “Higher Intro”, JFraze hits with “Dance in the Spirit”.  Yeah, he still sounds like Montell…and the music has a smooth R&B sound.  The only problem is this is the smooth R&B sound that was hot in the 90’s or early 2000’s at best.  This album took me back, for real.  If I were to sum up this entire project with a simple statement it would be, “smooth, but dated”.  With that being said, some songs while musically sound (aka nothing flat or off beat and most things sounding like it’s mixed well), come across as slightly corny.  For example, I can’t decide whether I’m going to like “I am not Ashamed” yet.  Yes, it’s smooth…it’s just so dated!  Oh, what a dilemma!  You may or may not know this, but Montell Jordan did get saved and is actually active in the church now-a-days.  JFraze sounded so much like Montell that I literally googled JFraze to see a picture of him just to make sure JFraze wasn’t Montell’s new stage name or something.  Yes, I’m serious.  Think about it.  Jordan…”J” Fraze, c’mon, it’s not that far-fetched!  But I digress.

I really like “If He Left it to Me”.  I could hear this song being played consistently on the radio.  It’s still a tad bit dated, but its one of those slow, smooth songs that it’s hard to say no to.  It has great music.  I love the harmony and background vocals.  Sometimes when JFraze gets to a crescendo on his adlibs his voice gets a little too loud and these are the few moments where the songs cease to be smooth.  JFraze has a nice voice but on these parts in numerous songs, it sounds like he’s trying too hard.  This is probably more of a recording/mixing and mastering issue than anything else.  A couple more takes needed in the booth maybe?

Speaking of mixing, JFraze mixes it up on “Jehovah Jireh”.  This song has that feel of what you would hear in your church on Sunday morning with a soloist being backed up by a choir.  It’s a nice song.  My favorite songs on this project were slow songs like “I Will Serve You Lord”, and “If He Left it Up to Me”.  Slow smooth songs were definitely the strong point on this album.  I also really liked “He Changed My Name”.  Other high points were the features.  The rap verses were well placed and added an extra flavor to each song.  In the end, I’m glad I had the opportunity to hear JFraze, and I can’t always say that.  But, this project still sounds like Montell Jordan, Aaron Hall, and H-Town all mixed into one…after salvation of course.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.  But hey, everybody is a critic.  I’m just the guy who wrote the review.  Peace and much love.

Comprehensive Rating:

  • Music                           7
  • Flow                            9
  • Lyricism                       7
  • Content                        8
  • Creativity                      5
  • Credibility                     6
  • Personality                    7
  • Presentation                  5
  • Overall Production        5
  • Potential Impact            3

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