LeToya | Capitol  
By MICHAEL FREEDBERG  |  August 21, 2006
3.0 3.0 Stars

WAS DESTINY ALL ABOUT BEYONCÉ? You won’t think so after hearing LeToya.
If you were thinking that Destiny’s Child was all about Beyoncé Knowles, think again. LeToya’s debut CD — coming pretty quickly after Destiny’s break-up — has it all. Great songs, funky sexy songs (“All Eyes on Me”), romantic songs (“This Song”), intense songs (“Obvious”), gangsta-girl songs (“Gangsta Grlls,” what else), fun and exotic songs (“I’m Good”), sexy dance music (“Tear da Club Up”), a soulful version of regggaetón (“What Love Can Do”), and songs reminiscent of 1970s Philly soul — the hit “Torn,” with its echoes of the incomparable late Linda Jones. LeToya can sing; her voice hasn’t the luminescent high notes of Beyoncé, but she can riff a melody almost as forcefully as Mary J. Blige. She has a several-octave range, now contralto (“What Love Can Do”), now soprano (“Torn”). There’s also a remix of “Torn” that has her singing with not one but two fly guys, Mike Jones and Rick Ross — a move reminiscent of Blige’s “Pain Suite” in which she too sings to the guy she is leaving and then to the guy she is hoping to be caught by, except that LeToya is caught by both, and hung up on the uncertainty of her (temporary) certitudes.

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LeToya's official Web site: http://www.letoya.net/

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