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PopEntertainment.com > Reviews > Record Reviews > Baha Men

MUSIC REVIEWS

 

Baha Men-Holla! (S-Curve)

The Baha Men's hit single of a few years ago, "Who Let the Dogs Out?," has turned out to be both a blessing and a curse for this long-lived group out of Nassau.  After a decade of almost breaking through, the band had finally gotten a smash hit.  The Men have been trying ever since to make sure that "...Dogs Out" is not the group's "Macarena"; a cute novelty song that had the whole world singing it for a few months and then mocking it just as passionately after it fell off the charts.  While the song definitely does not deserve to be made fun of on the eventual VH1 special I Love the '00s, it will.  You know that is inevitable.  The fun and funky "woo, woo, woo" chorus and the instant appeal to a rather young demographic gave the Baha Men a rep as a kid's band.  The group's last album Move It Like This and it's bubblegum funk title-track hit did not do to much to dissuade this viewpoint.

While the group's new album, Holla!, is certainly going to be enjoyed by the Radio Disney fans, the album is also a step back towards the more serious adult fare the group did on early albums like Junkanoo.  It is also their best overall album since that record.  Somehow it is not so desperate for airplay as Move It Like This.  It's more fun, more free and more funky. 

The band sticks more to what they are good at on this album, and it shows.  "Music" is an intoxicating island jam that goes down as smooth as a frosty Junkanoo Rush in a little hut on Paradise Island.  "Tempted" is some sweet dance pop.  "Big Love" is a smooth and sultry hip-hop love jam that smolders with tropical passion.  The popularity of toasters like Sean Paul and Petey Pablo have convinced the band to be even more free with the island riddims, and songs like the title track and "Summertime Girls" (which had been recorded for last year's movie American Wedding) show some of the newer artists how tropical raps are done.  "Jump" would be a nearly-perfect reggae-tinged dance single.  If they have not decided to release this, they are just missing the boat.

Holla! is further proof that the Baha Men are a talented group, not just a one time thang.  I hope enough people put aside their preconceptions and get the chance to hear this record.  It deserves a broad audience.  (7/04)

Jay S. Jacobs

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Copyright 2004 PopEntertainment.com All rights reserved.
Posted July 24, 2004
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