and Paul Chi
January 28, 2008 12:00 PM

Love Behind the Melody |


Like many of today’s neo-soul men, Raheem DeVaughn sounds as if he was rocking to Marvin Gaye in the cradle. You can hear echoes of Gaye throughout DeVaughn’s second album, from sexy, sumptuous midtempo grooves like first single “Woman” and the Floetry-assisted “Marathon” to the ’60s-Motown homage “Friday (Shut the Club Down),” which subtly borrows from Gaye and Tammi Terrell’s “You’re All I Need to Get By” (and not-so-subtly from the Temptations’ “My Girl”). But DeVaughn has learned a few things from latter-day lovemen too: “Customer,” with its carnal metaphors, is an R. Kelly-style slow jam, while “Four Letter Word” is D’Angelo redux.

DOWNLOAD THIS: “Mo Better,” falsetto-laced foreplay

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