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SAVE THE LAST DANCE: SOUNDTRACK

"Two juvenile reflections on race relations and a dozen adolescent urges for some racy relations. Thatís the lyrical content of this CD. But if you can live with the absurd words, it does have some slinky beats and some soulful voices. Thereís none of the ballet-side of the filmís soundtrack, nor many powerfully driving rhythms despite the dance theme, but thereís plenty of mid-tempo hip-hop and R&B to encourage encounters of the up close and pelvic-thrusting kind.

The film and soundtrack may be aimed at a young demographic but its an insult to the rather sensitive and intelligent youths portrayed in the narrative, and condescending to a target market of any age when Babyfaceís brother and others croon babybrained lines like: "That negligee that youíre wearing is tight/When you take it off all I can say is my, my, my." My, my, my, you really have to wonder if either author or audience is actually old enough to legally engage in such activities. At least when Isaac Hayes sings a lyric like this he sounds like he has his tongue so firmly in his cheek that women immediately go week at the knees imagining what else he might be able to do with it.

No-one in that league here, but thereís some serious talent on the warbling, if not the words, front all the same. Shining Through is a hip-hop reworking of the old Cyndi Lauper hit, which featured her Brooklyn twang wrapping itself around a rather appealing melodic refrain "I see your true colours shining through" (although we never saw Ms. Lauperís . . . well, not her hair in any case). Fredro Starr who has a co-starring role in the film raps effectively around the equally appealing voice of Jill Scott, even if profound observations like "weíre all the same colour when you turn out the lights" are unlikely to exterminate bigotry in a single song.

There is undeniably some impressive singing and rapping talent on this disc with highlights including the Chaka Demus & Pliers mid-nineties hit Murder She Wrote and the tight rhythmic harmonies of Soulboneís My Window. My only gripe with some of these tuneful soulsters is they commonly fall into the Stevie-wannabe sound. A natural effect is one thing, but the artificial tremolo thatís creeping in as the modern form of seductive serenade is not so much romantic as suggestive that thereís a device, which in circles favouring circumlocution is oft-referred to as a womanís personal electric pleasure stick, stuck down the would-be-serenaderís larynx. X-2-C is the worst offender, and perhaps this theory explains the moniker.

Despite the surfeit of shaking by the singers and the less-than-subtle lyrics, the music is consistently slick on this soundtrack. Itís not very original or passionate, but itís certainly smooth enough to arouse the passions of those who like to dance slow and close, and leave the last dance for the bedroom."
Brad Green

Published April 5, 2001

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MORE MUSIC from the movie

SOUNDTRACK CLIPS:
Shining Through - Fredro Starr and Jill Scott
My Window - Soulbone

TITLE: Save The Last Dance

ID: FMR

FEATURED ARTISTS: Fredro Starr & Jill Scott, Lucy Pearl (featuring Snoop Dogg & Q-Tip, X-2-C, K-Ci & JoJo, Pink, Donell Jones, Kevon Edmonds, Chaka Demus & Pliers, Ice Cube (featuring Mack 10 and Ms. Toi), Soulbone, 112 (featuring The Notorious B.I.G., Montell Jordan, Athena Cage, Soulshock & Karlin

TRACKS: 14

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