JAMIE FOXX: Intuition (Label: J Records)

JAMIE FOXX: Intuition

Since the Ray Charles biopic, multi-talented Jamie Foxx has been keeping something of a low profile. Indeed it was back in 2005 that he released his last full album – the rightly acclaimed ‘Unpredictable’, but now he’s back (musically, at least) with a new album that involves a cast list of heavy hitters. With involvement from the likes T.I., Li’l Wayne, T-Pain, Timbaland, Tricky, Ne-Yo and the ubiquitous Kanye West, it’s little wonder that ‘Intuition’ is a polished example of contemporary R&B and that said, many soul people might be inclined to switch off. Sure, stuff like ‘I Don’t Need It’ and ‘Number One’ perfectly fit the standard MTV Base template… you can easily image the lavish videos. But though it’s my contention that Foxx considers himself first and foremost an actor, he still has a fine soul voice – cuts above some of the R&B wannabees he works with here. Hear it at its best on the passionate ballad that is ‘Freakin’ Me’ – a simmering duet with Marsha Ambrosius… it’s a decent if formulaic cut. Much better is ‘I Don’t Know’ a mid-tempo bumper that samples both Marvin’s ‘I Want You’ and the Loving Spoonful’s ‘Summer In The City’ and, remarkably, the Salaam Remi production recaptures the haunting quality of both the source songs. Broad-minded modern soulsters could do worse than check it out. Elsewhere the first single – ‘Just Like Me’ – is annoyingly catchy while the so-called ‘bonus track’, ‘Love Brings Change’ is a balladic throwback to the Boys II Men era. Overall, ‘Intuition’ lacks the consistent soul quality of ‘Unpredictable’ but I guess Foxx himself is more than happy with it, knowing that it will help re-establish himself with the demographic that counts.
(BB) 3/5