Consistency-equals-boring is a prevailing concept in modern urban music, and it has had lethal consequences. Case in point: Ms. Kelly devolved into the usual multiproducer collection of potential singles, designed to appeal to as many consumers as possible.
The results are predictably hit-or-miss. The club cuts -- added to show Rowland's young 'n' fun side -- are derivative; Scott Storch's "Work" is Beyoncé's "Crazy in Love" four years later. Unsurprisingly, it's the brokenhearted ballads -- most notably, the brutal "Still in Love With My Ex" -- that show Rowland can be more than just the latest one-name soul singer, following in her old bandmate's massive, spike-heeled footsteps.