January 22, 2001 12:00 PM

Dream (Bad Boy/Arista)

Here we go again: four photogenic, dance-crazy California teens; sleek production numbers; and a catchy bubblegum sound. Only this time the Dreammarker is not your usual white-bread pop producer but hip-hop impresario Sean “Puffy” Combs. And as the first all-white pop act signed to the label that launched the Notorious B.I.G. and Lil’ Kim, these girls have a lot to live up to.

The CD gets off to a cheesy start, as each of the band members—Holly Arnstein, 15; Melissa Schumann, 16; Ashley Poole, 15; and Diana Ortiz, 15—introduce themselves by name. But Mouseketeers these girls are not. As may be deduced from their not-that-innocent come-hither looks, the Dream team can sound decidedly adult. “You can pout your cherry lips/ Try to tempt him with a sweet kiss,” sings Arnstein, a Christina Aguilera soundalike, on the hot-and-bothered hit “He Loves U Not.” Far more fun are a melodic blue-eyed soul cover of New Edition’s “Mr. Telephone Man” and the refreshingly innocent “How Long,” on which, thankfully, the girls sound their age.

Bottom Line: Not exactly the sweetest Dream

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