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"Bluestars" came out in 2005 as the debut album from Pretty Ricky. It would be best to compare this Miami-based quartet to those already out there. They seem to be made to act as a more 'thuggish' version of B2K, whose gimmick was that they were an R&B group out of LA, and so carried through the gang culture to their female-directed songs. Here the group take this a stage further, and almost abandon the R&B side of things, mainly putting thtis in the hooks as the rap for the majority of their tracks. The group is made up of Slick'Em, Baby Blue, Spectacular, and Pleasure P, although the latter member left in 2007.
To get things going you have them introduce themselves, before singing of how they wish to "Play House". It gets them usingin this role play idea to come out with its endless lyrical potential. They talk of what they want to do with a girl once they get them alone.
2. "Your Body"
This came as the second single for the group, and met similar success to the one which came just before it, "Grind On Me",. I has them increase the pace of things and do one which is a lot lighter, offering a fair deal of freedom to listeners who may want to just chill, but it still possess engaging lyrics for when you want to get inot them and be taken over by the soothing sounds of the group.
3. "Grind On Me"
Here's the song which got the group out their and immediately dragged in a massive female fan base. You will probably recognise it more for the title "Grind With Me", which is used as a clean version to it, however you get pretty much the same in both as the create a sensual mood with the warming hooks and seductive, slow raps.
4. "Get A Little Closer"
I quite enjoyed this one, it was a lot cleaner than much of their work (which tends to be quite explicit in its lyrical content). They sincerely ask to simply get mre emotionally connected to girls who they don't know too well at the time.
5. "Never Let You Go"
From the acoustic opening to thig song, I knew that I wasn't going to enjoy it. They attempt to swcth it up with Hard Rock guitar riffs added onto it, however it was a feedle attempt to change things as they sing so predictably in desperation to make a relationship work.
6. "Juicy" (feat. Static Major)
The late Static Major joins them on this one, and although I usually enjoy what he does, this one did very littel for me, and I failed to get much from it as they do a sensual one, but as you find with much of it, the raps ruin the atmosphere which the chorus creates.
7. "Call Me"
Using a familar sample, you get them performing a song where they use typical themse for R&B songs of the time. I thought that the raps were a little out of focus, and they didn't quite fit in as well as the nice Pleasure P hook did. There's lots to enjoy, but the flaws are just as obvious.
8. "Nothing But A Number"
This under-promoted single was the final one from the album, and has the group sing about exactly what is said in the title. I wouldn't have said it's relevant for such young musicians to sing about such a subject, but it's done regardless of this whilst trying to appeal to older women. It has minimalistic production, and has them mainly rely on their singing ability (rather than raps).
9. "Grill 'Em"
On this one the group show that they have what it takes to come up with a Dirty South cut. It gets them take on lots of Houston-inspired stuff as they enforce their position as Bluestars (which seems to be a weak name referring to them as a gang). Although the rhymes are strong enough to get through, it is a bit too Pop, and the themes are rather predictable (with grills the main topic of this track).
10. "Get You Right"
You have a slow one here, and it has Pleasure P reach his full potentialas he is able to sing properly for once, and he shows just how strong his vocals are. The briefs raps are sufficient to get across their signature style, but I liked that they take it back to the '90s with this Pleasure P-led song.
On this one, they get a chance to go for some straight Dirty South rap, and here it really works as they make the soft, soothing vocas work in a tune whihc mainly revolves around them doing some fast raps about what they do in their car.
12. "Shorty Be Mine"
Although there are quite a few with identical themses on this albbum, it is a valued cut off the album, and gets the group coming out with a very strong Jim Jonsin-produced R&B song, which gets them focus on Pleasure P's and the singing, and keeping the raps to a minimum.
13."I Want You"
Although the lyrics are extremely Pop. I felt that this could be ignored when you hear the fly raps and exciting miami Bass-inspired beats from Jim Jonsin. I cna't see where you can really pull it up, as it does wat is required as an up-lifting tracks with nice lyrics.
14. "Can't Live Without You"
This is an empowering song from the group, and it gets them coming with some innovative stuff as they find a way to do a ballad, which enables raps to come in without over-powering it all, and making it sound stupid. It is a banger and grows on you with time.
I found this to be a surprising strong album from Pretty Ricky, and a great way to kick off their career. I liked the way that the group works together to bring out all of their strengths, but they have to take more care in what they do, and not force certain things into their material, when it clearly won't work.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
2 Your Body
3 Grind With Me
4 Get A Little Closer
5 Never Let You Go
6 Juicy - Pretty Ricky & Static Major
7 Call Me
8 Nothing But A Number
9 Grill 'Em
10 Get You Right
12 I Want You (Girlfriend)
13 Shorty Be Mine
14 Can't Live Without You