Photographer: Dennis Leupold.
After 3D, an album released months after the death of Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes, Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins and Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas continued as TLC in fits and starts. For a period of 15 years, as TLC became increasingly revered for their 1992-2002 run -- as the platinum-selling, Grammy-winning link between Klymaxx and Destiny's Child -- T-Boz and Chilli rarely recorded, their profile temporarily increased with a 2005 reality series and a 2013 biographical film. Made with crowd-funding assistance, this is said to be the final TLC album, although T-Boz and Chilli intend to continue touring. Fan support presumably enabled the duo's connections with an extended cast of songwriters and producers, who include most prominently Ron Fair, also the album's executive producer. Although the duo don't reunite with any of their previous hitmaking studio partners -- that means no Babyface, Dallas Austin, or Organized Noize -- they're not too proud to reminisce on the feel-good "Way Back," produced by D'Mile with a guest verse from Snoop Dogg, and "Perfect Girls" -- from its consoling words regarding self-image to its gentle acoustic guitar, it's unmistakably an "Unpretty" sequel. There are hints of assertive attitude in "Aye Muthafucka," and there's a sensual slow jam in the form of "Scandalous," yet a greater portion of the album is suited more for Radio Disney than for Hot 97. "Haters" especially seems like it was written for a teen pop group, while another single, "It's Sunny," incorporates Bobby Hebb's "Sunny" and Earth, Wind & Fire's "September" with similarly youthful results. One-and-a-half decades evidently had little effect on T-Boz, who unsurprisingly handles the vast majority of the vocals, sounding no different than she did in the early 2000s. ~ Andy Kellman
- Genre: Pop
- Format: CD
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