Ne-Yo is a different story. In My Own Words, his ballad-heavy debut from last year, showcased an artist who could write as well as croon. And now, Because of You makes his case via the dance floor. The ebullient title song deliberately evokes Off the Wall, while the synth-heavy "Sex With My Ex" takes its cues from the only dude Jackson could've called his equal: Prince. However, without a standout slow jam like 2006's "So Sick," the overall effect is slightly less immediate than before -- but that doesn't mean Hova will be wrong in the long run.
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