Maintaining your artistic identity while growing as an artist is often difficult.

Maintaining your artistic identity while growing as an artist is often difficult. Musiq ably handles that task on this, his sophomore set for Def Soul. The beauty of the singer/songwriter's 2000 debut, Aijuswanaseing, was its simplicity. That directness continues to shine through on Juslisen. Lead single "Halfcrazy" is a bona fide hit at radio. The funk-fused "Caughtup" (featuring AAries) finds Musiq revisiting the muse of Aijuswanaseing's "Seventeen." "Newness" and the beautiful "Dontchange" tackle both ends of the relationship spectrum. Musiq also stretches out on Juslisen; the organ-drenched, feel-good vibes of "religious" and "Motherfather" are very Sunday morning. The artist closes the set with a cover of the Beatles' "Something." Penned by Billboard Century Award winner George Harrison, the classic gets a soulful spin that makes it Musiq's own.—RH